Press Releases


Durbin Announces $42.3 Million in Additional High Speed Rail Funding for Illinois

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that Illinois will receive $42.3 million in additional high speed rail funding to finance track and other improvements on the Chicago to St. Louis corridor. Earlier today the Secretary of the Department of Transportation, Ray LaHood, reprogrammed a total of $1.2 billion in funding that was rejected by the incoming governors of Ohio and Wisconsin. "Illinois will be able to use this funding to break ground on projects that we… Continue Reading


Why I'm Voting Yes

CHICAGO TRIBUNE On Friday, when President Barack Obama's National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform gathers to consider a plan to bring our national debt under control, I will be voting yes. It was not an easy decision, and I know my vote will be widely criticized, but I believe it is the right thing to do. The simple fact is this: America needs to grow our economy and reduce our $13.8 trillion debt. This plan is not perfect, and it is certainly not the plan I wou… Continue Reading


Durbin Pays Tribute to Ron Santo on Senate Floor

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today celebrated the life of Chicago Cubs legend, Ron Santo, on the floor of the U.S. Senate. "Baseball may one day see a third baseman with the playing skills of Ron Santo. But it's hard to imagine that we will ever again see a ballplayer with greater loyalty or love for a city, its team and its fans," said Durbin. Text of Durbin's remarks as prepared below: Senator Richard Durbin Statement on Passing of Ron Santo December 3, 2… Continue Reading


Durbin, Snowe Bill to Protect Women and Girls from Child Marriage Passes Senate

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - The Senate unanimously passed the International Protecting Girls by Preventing Child Marriage Act late last night, a bill to protect women and girls in developing countries from child marriages. The bill, introduced by Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Senator Olympia Snowe (R-ME), requires the U.S. government to develop an integrated, strategic approach to combating child marriage with the goal of eliminating this practice worldwide. The bill also seek… Continue Reading


Durbin Introduces Legislation to Delay Flood Map Implementation for Five Years

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) joined Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY) in introducing a bill to delay the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)'s mandatory flood insurance purchase requirement for five years in communities with newly designated flood maps across the country - including Metro East, Illinois where up to 30,000 properties will be affected. "I have been working closely with members of the Senate Banking Committee including Senator Schumer to see that the … Continue Reading


Durbin: Senate Judiciary Committee Approves Federal Judicial Nominees in Central District

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that the Senate Judiciary Committee, of which he is a member, has unanimously approved Sue Myerscough and James Shadid for federal judgeships on the U.S. District Court in the Central District of Illinois. Their nominations will now proceed to a vote by the full Senate. "Justice Myerscough and Judge Shadid will each bring a great depth of experience and legal acumen to the federal judiciary," said Durbin. "I look forward to … Continue Reading


Historic Bipartisan Food Safety Bill Passes Senate

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - The FDA Food Safety Modernization Act passed the Senate today marking most comprehensive reform of the nation's food safety system in over a decade. The bipartisan bill, initiated by Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL), will grant the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) new authorities and resources to ensure the safety of our food supply. "Today's vote will finally give the FDA the tools it needs to help ensure that the food on dinner tables and store sh… Continue Reading


Durbin Welcomes Kirk to U.S. Senate

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today escorted Senator-elect Mark Kirk (R-IL) onto the floor of the U.S. Senate for his swearing in ceremony. Kirk was sworn-in this evening by Vice President Joe Biden as Senator from Illinois. "I was honored to escort Senator Kirk to his swearing in ceremony," said Durbin. "I look forward to working with him and carrying on our state's long tradition of bipartisan cooperation." Kirk resigned his position as U.S. Representative o… Continue Reading


Chamber of Commerce Endorses Durbin Food Safety Bill

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - The U.S. Chamber of Commerce endorsed Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin's (D-IL) FDA Food Safety Modernization Act today, saying it will "improve America's ability to prevent food borne illness and boost consumer confidence in U.S. food supplies while minimally burdening small farms and consumers," "This legislation would improve food safety by requiring all food manufacturers to develop a food safety plan, providing the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)… Continue Reading


Durbin and Kirk Meet to Discuss Illinois Priorities

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Senator-elect Mark Kirk (R-IL) met today in Durbin's Washington office to discuss ways in which they will work together on Illinois priorities in the 112th Congress. "Senator-elect Kirk and I had a very constructive discussion about the challenges that face Illinois in the years ahead," said Durbin. "Though we may disagree on some issues, we agreed that there is much common ground when it comes to Illinois. Our st… Continue Reading


Durbin Chairs Hearing on Ratification of Women's Rights Treaty

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) chaired a hearing today on U.S. ratification of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW). CEDAW is the only international treaty to focus solely on the rights of women and it addresses issues such as violence against women, sex trafficking, the right to vote and equal access to education. Today's hearing was the first ever Judiciary Committee hearing on whether to ratify a human… Continue Reading


Durbin: Senate Judiciary Committee Approves US Marshal Nominee in Central District

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that the Senate Judiciary Committee, of which he is a member, unanimously approved Kenneth Bohac to serve as U.S. Marshal in the Central District of Illinois. His nomination will now proceed to a vote by the full Senate. "Through many years of service to Illinois and his country, Kenneth Bohac has established a reputation for responsibility and professionalism in the law enforcement community," said Durbin. "It was an honor… Continue Reading


Durbin: White House Nominates Darrow to Fill Federal Judgeship in Central District

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that President Obama has nominated Sara Darrow to fill the vacancy on the U.S. District Court in the Central District of Illinois created by Judge Joe Billy McDade's decision to take senior status. "Sara Darrow is an outstanding candidate to serve as a federal judge in Peoria," said Durbin. "Her dedication to public service and her experience as a state and federal prosecutor and in private practice will serve her well on… Continue Reading


Durbin Congratulates Stan "The Man" Musial on Presidential Medal of Freedom

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today offered his heartfelt congratulations to Baseball Hall of Famer Stan "The Man" Musial for being chosen by President Obama to receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Musial, widely recognized as one of the greatest baseball players in history, dedicated 22 years to the game of baseball, served in the Navy during World War II and has dedicated the rest of his life to public service and the St. Louis community. "As a young kid in Eas… Continue Reading


Durbin Re-Elected to Senate Assistant Majority Leader Post

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) was today re-elected to the Senate's second highest ranking leadership post -- Assistant Majority Leader, also known as Majority Whip. Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) was elected as Majority Leader, Chuck Schumer (D-NY) was elected as Vice Chair of the Democratic Conference and Patty Murray (D-WA) was elected Democratic Conference Secretary in today's balloting. "I am honored that my Senate colleagues have again entrusted me with this responsibility," D… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on Announcement of Six Illinois Communities Eligible to Host FutureGen 2.0

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today released the following statement after learning that the competition to host the storage site for FutureGen 2.0 has moved into the next phase after six Illinois communities - City of Quincy, Christian County, Douglas County, City of Tuscola, Morgan County, Pike County and City of Vandalia - submitted full proposals to the FutureGen Alliance. The storage site will receive and store carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from an upgraded power pla… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on Agreement Between Florida Tomato Workers and the Florida Tomato Industry

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin released the following statement today after the Coalition of Immokalee Workers (CIW) and the Florida Tomato Growers Exchange (FTGE) reached an agreement ending a long-lasting stalemate. "Under the agreement reached today, Florida's tomato workers will be given their first wage increase in 30 years. And going forward, the growers will abide by a strict and transparent code of conduct ensuring that workers be treated fairly and… Continue Reading


Durbin Meets with Principal of Blue Ribbon School, Edison Elementary

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today met with Principal Jim Pluskota of Edison Elementary School in Elmhurst which was recently recognized as a Blue Ribbon School by the Department of Education. Lynn Krizic, Superintendent of Elmhurst School District 205 and Nancy Galas, a fifth-grade teacher at Edison, also attended today's meeting. On September 9, Secretary Duncan announced 304 schools from across the country had been awarded Blue Ribbon status. Of the Blue Ribbon Sch… Continue Reading


U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood Announces Funding Commitment for New O'Hare South Air Traffic Control Tower

[CHICAGO - U.S.] Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood today announced that the Federal Aviation Administration will fund the design and construction of a new South Air Traffic Control Tower at Chicago's O'Hare Airport, scheduled to be built as part of the O'Hare Modernization Program (OMP). The agreement will allow Chicago to complete the construction of the tower in time for the successful commissioning of the new runway 10R/28L, which is scheduled for completion in early 2015. "O'Hare i… Continue Reading


Durbin: Success of Cape Air in Downstate Communities Creates Opportunity for Continued Essential Air Service

[WASHINGTON, DC] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that the Department of Transportation will begin soliciting proposals from air carriers interested in providing service starting December 1, 2011 in the communities of Quincy and Marion/Herrin. The current provider Cape Air - whose contract with the Department is schedule to expire on November 30, 2011 - has dramatically increased ridership on flights to and from both communities. "The success of Cape Air… Continue Reading

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