Press Releases


Durbin Announces Over $1.1 Million Investment in Illinois First-Responder Capabilities

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), part of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), has made a $1,110,266 investment in six fire departments in Illinois. Today's funding will help support and improve the capability of each 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 these brave men and women… Continue Reading


Durbin to Chair Hearing on Racial Profiling in America

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Majority Leader and Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights, Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced a hearing on racial profiling in America to be held on Tuesday, April 17, 2012 at 10:00am ET. The hearing will be held in room 226 of the Dirksen Senate Office Building in Washington. The hearing - the first in the Senate since before 9/11 - will explore how profiling harms law enforcement and the diffe… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces Nearly $700,000 in Illinois First-Responder Capabilities

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), part of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), has made a $686,381 investment in six fire departments in Illinois. Today's funding will help support and improve the capability of each 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 these brave men and women p… Continue Reading


After Death of Young Girl, Durbin Calls for FDA to Investigate Energy Drinks That Contain Dangerously High Levels of Caffeine

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - In a letter to the Commissioner of the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today called for an investigation into energy drinks like 'Monster Energy', 'Rockstar' and 'Red Bull' which contain high levels of caffeine and potentially dangerous ingredients yet are marketed to young people. Durbin's call for an investigation comes after learning the story of a 14 year-old girl from Maryland, Anais Fournier, who died last December of a cardiac ar… Continue Reading


At Start of Baseball Season, Durbin, Lautenberg, Harkin, Blumenthal Applaud MLB for Banning Tobacco Use

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - As the Miami Marlins prepare to host the World Series Champion St. Louis Cardinals on Major League Baseball's opening night, U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ), Tom Harkin (D-IA), and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) commended Major League Baseball (MLB) and the MLB Players Association for implementing restrictions on smokeless tobacco use both on and off the field. The collective bargaining agreement announced last November, which is still being drafted… Continue Reading


Durbin: Project Rebuild Act Would Help Turn Around Vacant Homes and Businesses

[Rockford, IL] - In an effort to stabilize neighborhoods, rehab vacant and foreclosed homes and businesses, and create jobs, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) pushed for passage of the Project Rebuild Act while visiting Rockford today. The legislation would help rehab houses and businesses that have been abandoned through foreclosure by providing targeted assistance through formula funding and new competitive grants. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) estimates that Illin… Continue Reading


Durbin, Kirk Baha'i Resolution Passes in the U.S. Senate by Unanimous Consent

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - The United States Senate last night unanimously approved a resolution sponsored by Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) condemning the government of Iran for its state-sponsored persecution of its Baha'i minority. The resolution, S. Res. 80, demands the Government of Iran uphold the rights of all Iranian nationals, including members of the Baha'i faith. A House companion, H. Res. 134, introduced by Representatives Robert Dold (R-IL), Dan Lipinski (D-IL) and Brad … Continue Reading


Durbin and Kirk Statement on Passage of Resolution Supporting NATO's Upcoming Chicago Summit

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) released the following statement today after the Senate passed by voice vote a resolution supporting the upcoming North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) summit in Chicago: "The upcoming Chicago Summit is an opportunity to showcase Illinois and this great city to the world," said Durbin. "Thousands of visitors will get the chance to experience our world-class city-the birthplace of the modern skyscraper and the elev… Continue Reading


"Student Debt Bomb" Alert: Durbin, Harkin, Introduce Bill to Ensure Students Are Not Misled on Loan Options

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Noting that two-thirds of private student loan borrowers were not aware of the dramatic difference between federal student loans and risky, higher-interest, private student loans, U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Tom Harkin (D-IA) today introduced a bill that would require schools to counsel students before they sign on to expensive, even unnecessary, private student loan debt and inform them if they have any untapped federal loan eligibility. In many instances students … Continue Reading


Durbin and Franken Introduce Legislation to Reduce Tax Haven Abuse

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - US Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Al Franken (D-MN) introduced legislation today that would require Members of Congress and candidates for federal office to include in their financial disclosure filing an accounting of any financial interest in a country that is considered a tax haven. The bill would also apply to federal employees who are required to file financial disclosures and the spouses of Members of Congress or candidates. "Any individual who has or wants to hav… Continue Reading


Durbin Chairs Hearing on Treasury Department Budget

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) chaired a hearing today to review the FY2013 budget request for the Department of the Treasury and to discuss the impact of the foreclosure crisis and our nation's growing student loan debt on the economic recovery. President Obama's FY2013 budget request for the Treasury Department is $14.072 billion which includes funding for the Internal Revenue Service and the Community Development Financial Institutions Fund. Treasury… Continue Reading


Durbin Asks State Department to Update US-Mexico Extradition Treaty

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - In a letter to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today asked the State Department to work with its Mexican counterpart to modify two outdated provisions of the U.S.-Mexico Extradition Treaty to allow more international fugitives to be brought to justice in the United States. "Given that the original treaty was executed over 30 years ago and only one protocol has been executed since then, the time is well overdue for the U.S. and Mexico … Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on Temporary Protected Status for Syria

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - US Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement today after the Obama Administration announced that temporary protected status (TPS) would be extended to Syrian nationals currently in the United States. Such a designation allows Syrians living in the United States to temporarily stay because violence in their home country poses a serious threat to their safety. Durbin, along with Senators Leahy (D-VT), Feinstein (D-CA), Menendez (D-NJ), Cardin (D-MD) and Casey… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces Judiciary Hearing on Sports Bounties

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced today that he will chair a Judiciary Committee hearing on bounties in sports and determining whether federal sports bribery laws should be expanded to include sports bounty programs. The announcement comes the day after the National Football League (NFL) suspended the New Orleans Saints' head coach, defensive coordinator, and general manager for their involvement in a bounty program used by the team. The hearing w… Continue Reading


Durbin, Kirk, Shimkus, Costello Welcome SBA Disaster Declaration for Southern Illinois Counties

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) and Congressmen John Shimkus (R-IL) and Jerry Costello (D-IL) today welcomed the announcement of a U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Disaster Declaration for Saline County, which will allow residents and businesses in the region severely impacted by severe storms and tornadoes three weeks ago to receive SBA loans. These loans provide assistance to homeowners, renters, businesses to repair or replace disaster damage… Continue Reading


Sports Bounties

Mr./Mme. President, I rise to speak about a disturbing practice that was recently uncovered by the National Football League. Let me say, it is important to play hard in every sport. But it is also important to play fair … and to play safe. I was appalled to learn about a recent National Football League investigation revealing that the New Orleans Saints had allegedly been running an illegal "bounty" program. Through this disturbing practice, players were reportedly given signi… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces His Opposition to S.S. Badger Effort to Secure New EPA Permit

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - In a letter to the owner of the S.S. Badger, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that he will actively oppose the company's efforts to secure a permit that would allow the S.S. Badger to continue dumping over 500 tons of coal ash into Lake Michigan each year. Durbin's announcement comes after his meeting with the President and CEO of the Lake Michigan Carferry Service, Robert Manglitz, who proposed a plan to convert the S.S. Badger to liquefied natural gas (LNG)… Continue Reading


Durbin, Kirk, Shimkus, Costello React to Denial of Disaster Declaration for Southern Illinois

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) and Congressmen John Shimkus (R-IL) and Jerry Costello (D-IL) today expressed disappointment after receiving word that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has denied the State of Illinois' appeal for a Presidential disaster declaration for five counties - Gallatin, Randolph, Saline, Union, and Williamson - in Southern Illinois that were devastated by severe storms and tornadoes three weeks ago. "A few days… Continue Reading


Durbin Calls on Senate to Pass Irish E3 Visa Bill

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Following Taoiseach Enda Kenny's visit to Washington yesterday, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin today called on the Senate to pass the Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act, which includes a Durbin co-sponsored amendment establishing a two-year visa program for Irish citizens. The Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act has already passed the House of Representatives with broad bipartisan support. "In December, Senators Schumer, Leahy and I introduced an amendment that rec… Continue Reading


Durbin Chairs Budget Hearing on CFTC

[WASHINGTON, DC] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today chaired a hearing which reviewed the funding request of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), one of the nation's primary financial market regulators. CFTC Chairman Gary Gensler testified before Durbin's Appropriations Financial Services and General Government Subcommittee. "With our markets on the rebound, record high gas prices and vast new regulatory responsibilities, CFTC's roles in protecting consume… Continue Reading

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