Press Releases


Durbin Statement On Nomination Of Gina Haspel To Head CIA

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement on Gina Haspel, President Trump's nominee to be Director of the Central Intelligence Agency: America cannot close this sad chapter in our history of rendition, waterboarding, and enhanced interrogation techniques until we have accountability. Those who were part of the decision-making in those years must acknowledge that 'following orders' and trusting legal interpretations' are not sufficient to justify… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement On New Videos Of Josh Holt, A U.S. Citizen Imprisoned In Venezuela

ASHINGTON-U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement after Josh Holt, a U.S. citizen imprisoned on false charges, was seen begging for his life in two videos from inside a Caracas prison: I recently visited Venezuela and met with, among many others, President Maduro. I appealed to him directly to release Josh Holt and his Venezuelan wife, who are being held on plainly political charges. Maduro told me he was seriously considering it. Now, as reports of dang… Continue Reading


Durbin Calls On Republicans In Congress To Support Free & Open Internet

WASHINGTON-In a speech on the Senate floor, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today urged his Republican colleagues to vote to undo President Trump and Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Ajit Pai's repeal of net neutrality rules. Shortly after Durbin spoke, the Senate voted 52-47 to restore net neutrality. Three Republican senators joined with the entire Senate Democratic caucus in favor of the measure. Today's vote follows Senate Democrats' successful filing of a discharge petiti… Continue Reading


Durbin Y Menendez Exigen Elecciones Libres Y Justas En Venezuela

WASHINGTON-El Asistente Líder de la Minoría del Senado, Dick Durbin (D-IL), y el Senador Bob Menéndez (D-NJ), miembro de más alto rango del Comité de Relaciones Exteriores del Senado, advirtieron hoy al régimen de Maduro en Venezuela que las elecciones que se aproximan serían consideradas ilegítimas si se niega a cumplir con estándares básicos en las urnas, y exigieron elecciones libres y justas para el pueblo venezolano. "El… Continue Reading


Durbin, Menendez Call For Free And Fair Election In Venezuela

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ), Ranking Member of the Foreign Relations Committee, today warned the Maduro regime in Venezuela that its upcoming snap election would be considered illegitimate if it failed to meet basic established standards, and called for free and fair election for the Venezuelan people. "The Venezuelan government under President Maduro has taken a series of repressive and undemocratic actions that threatens its … Continue Reading


Senate Confirms Michael Scudder & Amy St. Eve For The 7th Circuit Court Of Appeals

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) released the following statement after the Senate voted to confirm the nominations of Michael Y. Scudder, Jr. and U.S. District Judge Amy J. St. Eve to serve as Circuit Judges on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, based in Chicago: "Amy St. Eve and Michael Scudder have the experience, integrity, and judgment that we look for in federal judges, and we look forward to seeing them serve with distinction on the … Continue Reading


Durbin, Duckworth, Kelly Question EPA On Declared Monitoring & Testing Of Air Emissions

CHICAGO - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Tammy Duckworth, and U.S. Representative Robin Kelly (D-IL-02) today raised concerns at the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) failure to consistently require companies to monitor and test their air emissions for manganese air pollution-a known neurotoxin-on the Southeast Side of Chicago. The members pressed EPA to use its full authority under the Clean Air Act to protect human health and the environment. Today's letter to EPA Administrator … Continue Reading


Durbin Reintroduces Legislation to Combat Opioid Over-Production and Over-Prescribing

CHICAGO - As the prescription opioid, heroin, and fentanyl overdose epidemic continues to impact communites around Illinois and the country, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today reintroduced his legislation to improve opioid prescribing practices and responsibly limit the volume and type of addictive painkillers on the market. The Addiction Prevention and Responsible Opioid Practices Act (A-PROP Act) would strengthen oversight of the pharmaceutical industry, and help prevent opioid over-prescri… Continue Reading


Durbin, Roberts Introduce Bipartisan Legislation To Support Rural EMS Agencies

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Pat Roberts (R-KS) today introduced bipartisan legislation to reauthorize a federal grant program that directly supports rural emergency medical services (EMS) agencies in training and recruiting staff, conducting courses to satisfy certification requirements, and purchasing equipment-for everything from naloxone and first aid kits, to power stretchers or new ambulances. The Supporting and Improving Rural EMS Needs (SIREN) Act would reauthorize … Continue Reading


Durbin Urges FRA To Take More Active Role In Ensuring Amtrak's On-Time Performance

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today pressed the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) to take a more active role in working with the freight railroads to ensure Amtrak's on-time performance improves in Illinois and around the country. Amtrak's Chicago-Champaign-Carbondale route continues to be one of the worst preforming routes in the country. The Illini and Saluki trains are consistently delayed by Canadian National Railway's (CN) freight train interference and the ongoing spee… Continue Reading


Durbin Presses Trump Administration To Take Stronger Action To Protect Kids From E-Cigarette Addiction

WASHINGTON - Today, in a Senate Appropriations Committee hearing on the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) FY19 budget request, U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) pressed HHS Secretary Azar about how his agency plans to confront the rapid growth of e-cigarette and vaping use among youth in the United States. Durbin, while holding up e-cigarette packages and fruit- and candy-flavorings to show how the products are deliberately designed to appeal to children, criticized the … Continue Reading


Grassley, Durbin: Sentencing Reform Necessary For Senate Consideration Of Criminal Justice Reform

WASHINGTON-Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) today expressed optimism for continued consideration of criminal justice reform proposals, but warned that inclusion of key sentencing reforms is necessary to win Senate approval: "We are encouraged to see our House colleagues continue a serious discussion about necessary reforms to our nation's criminal justice system. However, as we move forward, reforms to federal sentencing la… Continue Reading


Judiciary Committee Democrats Call On President To Withdraw Controversial Justice Dept Nominee Tied To Russian Bank

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee Democrats are calling on President Trump to withdraw his controversial nomination of Brian Benczkowski to lead the Department of Justice's Criminal Division. Mr. Benczkowski represented Alfa Bank, a massive private commercial bank in Russia closely allied with President Vladimir Putin and his government, and has refused to pledge to recuse himself from Russia-related matters if confirmed. With new revelations coming to light about Russia's interference … Continue Reading


Durbin Statement On Trump Administration Decision To Shutter CFPB Office Designed To Protect Student Loan Borrowers

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) today released the following statement after the Trump Administration announced plans to shut down the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's (CFPB) Office for Students and Young Consumers: The Trump Administration's message to families ripped off by student loan fraud: 'stop whining.' Today's action to dismantle a student loan watchdog office at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau - which has returned three quarters of a billion… Continue Reading


Durbin Presses Trump Administration On Decision To Violate The Iran Nuclear Deal

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), Vice Chairman of the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, today questioned Secretary of Defense James Mattis and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Joseph Dunford on President Trump's decision to put the United States in violation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), better known as the Iran Nuclear Agreement. In 2015, Durbin led the effort in the Senate that ultimately allowed the Iran Nuclear Agreement to proceed, sec… Continue Reading


Durbin, Duckworth Push For Answers On Thebes Housing Crisis, Press HUD To Fully Abate Rent For Residents

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) today pressed Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson for details on his department's decision to close the Mary Alice Meadows (MAM) and Sunset Terrace (ST) housing complexes in Thebes, Illinois, and relocate the approximately 28 families living there. "HUD has cited immediate health and safety concerns present in the MAM and ST units and the inability of ACHA to feasibly remedy these hazards as justification fo… Continue Reading


Durbin Rips Trump Decision To Break Iran Deal

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) spoke on the Senate floor after President Trump announced that he will unilaterally pull the United States out of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), better known as the Iran Nuclear Agreement. In 2015, Durbin led the effort in the Senate that ultimately allowed the Iran Agreement to proceed, securing enough votes to block an effort to derail it. "So here we are today, with President Trump plunging us and our allies into unc… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement On Trump Violating The Iran Deal

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement after President Trump announced that he will unilaterally pull the United States out of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, better known as the Iran Nuclear Agreement: The last thing America and the world need right now is a new nuclear threat. Breaking this deal increases the danger that Iran will restart its nuclear weapons program, which threatens our ally, Israel, and destabilizes the entire Middl… Continue Reading


Durbin Questions CIA Openly Lobbying For Haspel Nomination

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), vice chairman of the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, today questioned the role of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) in openly and actively using Agency resources to promote the nomination of Gina Haspel to serve as its next director. "These efforts to promote a national security nomination appear to be without precedent in recent history," said Durbin. "Congress is being lobbied aggressively, and we must consider whether our in… Continue Reading


Durbin Calls on Trump Administration to Stop Sabotaging Health Care for Americans by Pushing Junk Insurance Plans

CHICAGO - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today called on President Trump's Administration to halt the expansion of junk insurance plans that would once again allow health insurance companies to refuse coverage to people with pre-existing conditions, raise premiums significantly for older Americans, and exclude basic benefits such as maternity care or prescription drugs. The Trump Administration has proposed a new rule to expand so-called "short-term" insurance plans to bypass the consumer prote… Continue Reading

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