Press Releases


Durbin will Host Illinois Soldier for Tonight's State of the Union

[WASHINGTON, DC] - In what has become an annual tradition, Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) will host a wounded Illinois soldier as his guest for President Barack Obama's State of the Union address. U.S. Army Specialist Jacob Owens from the Englewood neighborhood in Chicago, Illinois, will also attend the Secretary of the Senate's dinner immediately preceding the President's address. Durbin has invited soldiers who have served in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars as his guests … Continue Reading


Durbin, Harkin: Congress Must Remove Loophole that Encourages For-profit Colleges to Target Veterans

[CHICAGO, IL] - At a forum examining aggressive recruiting and marketing tactics practiced by some members of the for-profit college industry to target veterans and service members, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced legislation that would further limit federal government subsidies to for-profit colleges and eliminate the incentive for these extremely profitable schools to aggressively target veterans and service members. The Protecting Our Students and Taxpayers (POST) Act is cosp… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on Senator Mark Kirk

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - US Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement today after learning that his friend and colleague, Illinois Senator Mark Kirk (R-IL), has been hospitalized after suffering a stroke:"I was stunned to learn that Mark suffered a stroke. He is young and in good physical condition and I have no doubt he will make a speedy recovery. I have reached out to his staff and offered to do anything I can to help with his Senate duties. Loretta and I will keep Mark and his … Continue Reading


Durbin Travels to Cuba and Haiti

[WASHINGTON, DC] - Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) is in Havana, Cuba where he been holding two days of high-level meetings with Cuban officials. The trip has focused on changes in Cuba - including Cuba's substantial offshore drilling proposal - as well as discussions on improved relations between the US and the island nation. Durbin also pressed the Cuban government to release Alan Gross, a USAID contract worker who has been jailed since 2009. Gross was arrested and sentenced t… Continue Reading


Durbin: USDA Should Work More Closely with Chicago Public Schools to Eliminate Fraud in School Lunch Program

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Prompted by a Chicago Tribune report unveiling cases of school employees submitting false information in order to enroll more children for free and reduced lunches, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today called on the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to work more closely with schools and school districts - including Chicago Public Schools - to reduce or eliminate fraud in the National School Lunch Program (NSLP). Specifically, Durbin asked the USDA to brief… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces Field Hearing on Florida Voting Law

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - US Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights, today announced a field hearing examining the impact of Florida's new voting law, which restricts early voting and makes it harder for third-party groups to help people register to vote. The hearing will be held on January 27th, just days before the Florida Presidential Primary, at the Hillsborough County Courthouse in downtown Tampa. Among oth… Continue Reading


Durbin Meets with Chicago's Largest Microlender to Discuss Growing Small Business

[CHICAGO, IL] - Support for microfinance organizations that give small businesses and entrepreneurs access to credit will help spur our economic recovery and create jobs, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) said today at a meeting with officials from ACCION, Chicago's largest microlender, and the owners of Gourmet Gorilla, an organic school lunch catering company that is one of ACCION's fastest growing borrowers. ACCION provides credit and other business services to small business owners who do not … Continue Reading


Durbin: Amazon Agreement with Indiana Paves Way for Bipartisan Bill to Level the Playing Field for Main Street Retailers

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today said that the agreement between Amazon and Republican Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels will build momentum for bipartisan federal legislation - specifically the Marketplace Fairness Act that he introduced with Senators Mike Enzi (R-WY) and Lamar Alexander (R-TN) - which aims to level the playing field for Main Street retailers. Under the agreement, announced yesterday, Amazon will voluntarily begin collecting Indiana sales tax on internet… Continue Reading


Durbin Calls on Illinois Colleges and Universities to Help Protect Students from Hidden Bank Fees

[EDWARDSVILLE, IL] - Colleges and universities should take a leading role in promoting transparency in checking account fees, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) said today at Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville. Durbin called on Illinois schools to encourage their partner financial institutions to voluntarily adopt a bank account fee disclosure form designed to make checking account terms and fees transparent and easy for consumers to understand. College students - many of whom open checking … Continue Reading


Durbin and Quinn Announce $7.7 Million in Investment to Help Illinois Communities Recover from Storms

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Illinois Governor Pat Quinn today announced a more than $7.7 million investment in Illinois communities to help cover the costs of repairing roads and bridges damaged by storms last year. Today's funding is provided through the Department of Transportation's Emergency Relief program which funds the repair and reconstruction of federal highways and roads that have suffered serious damage as a result of natural disasters and other outside fac… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces a Nearly $700,000 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 $693,876 investment in seven fire departments in Illinois. Today's funding will help support and improve the capability of each department and protection district 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 t… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on Cordray Appointment

[WASHINGTON, DC] - Assistant Majority Leader, Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), released the following statement today after President Obama announced that he will appoint Richard Cordray to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau: "After months of delay by Senate Republicans, Cordray's nomination was called and defeated by a filibuster. Sadly, there were no objections to Cordray's qualifications only a decision by Senate Republicans to cripple this agency and try to politically punish the … Continue Reading


Durbin and Senator Call for End to Cigar Company's Sponsorship of NCAA Orange Bowl

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) was joined by Senators Frank R. Lautenberg (D-NJ) and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) in calling on the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) and the Orange Bowl Committee to reconsider a three-year agreement making a cigar company - Camacho Cigars - a corporate sponsor of the Discover Orange Bowl. "Tobacco has no place in sports, and the promotion of cigars at the Orange Bowl sends the wrong message to young fans," the Senators wrote.… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces a More than $757,000 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 $757,263 investment in seven fire departments in Illinois. Today's funding will help support and improve the capability of each department and protection district 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 t… Continue Reading


Durbin Calls on House to Maintain Unemployment Insurance Benefits

[CHICAGO, IL] - The House of Representatives must take quick action before the end of the year to ensure that millions of unemployed workers across the country do not lose access to the critical safety net provided by unemployment insurance, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) said today. A fully offset agreement to maintain all tiers of federal unemployment benefits for two months was approved in an overwhelmingly bipartisan vote by the Senate on Saturday, allowing lawmakers time to begin work on a… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on Speaker Boehner's Comments on the Bipartisan Payroll Tax Agreement

[SPRINGFIELD, IL] - Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement today in response to Speaker Boehner's comments on the bipartisan payroll tax agreement passed by the Senate yesterday: "It is time for the Speaker to convene the House and approve the bipartisan Senate agreement to extend the middle class tax cut and maintain unemployment benefits for 60 days." America has had its fill this year of repeated political ultimatums from Speaker Boehner. We can … Continue Reading


Durbin Calls on Illinois Banks to Follow Chase's Lead and Adopt Fee Disclosure Forms

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) sent letters to the Illinois Bankers Association, the Illinois Credit Union League and the Community Bankers Association of Illinois today, urging them to follow the lead of Chase bank and ask their membership to adopt a disclosure form designed to make checking account terms and fees transparent and easy for consumers to understand. A copy of the form, developed by The Pew Charitable Trusts' Safe Checking in the Electronic Age Project, is… Continue Reading


Durbin and Senators Request Ban on Flavored Cigars

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), Frank R. Lautenberg (D-NJ), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Jeff Merkley (D-OR) and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) in sending a letter to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) asking it to ban flavored cigars. "Cigars with candy-like flavorings such as strawberry, watermelon, vanilla and chocolate attract kids to smoking and help hook them on this addictive habit," the Senators wrote. "Congress helped protect young people from the harmful effect… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces Over $315,000 in HUD Grants to Reduce Homelessness Among Illinois Veterans

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced today that three Illinois communities will receive a total of $315,179 in Department of Housing and Urban Development-Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing (HUD-VASH) grant funding to help homeless veterans find shelter as they receive health and other services. "Last night, in Illinois alone, more than 1,000 homeless veterans were on the street," said Durbin. "This country can do better-and must do better-for t… Continue Reading


Durbin, Kirk, Senators Welcome FEMA Proposal to Move Toward a More Realistic Analysis of Flood Risk

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), Mark Kirk (R-IL), Thad Cochran (R-MS), Mark Pryor (D-AR) and Roger Wicker (R-MS) today encouraged community leaders, engineers and the people in flood prone areas to assess and then comment on a new risk assessment process that will replace the original method which was criticized by the lawmakers earlier this year. They argued that the original method disregarded the existence of uncertified levees and flood control structures and unjustly… Continue Reading

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