Press Releases

12.11.21

Durbin Joins Illinois Municipal League, Highlights Federal Relief For Local Governments

CHICAGO - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today joined mayors and village presidents from around Illinois at the Illinois Municipal League's board meeting to discuss how new federal investments are helping cities and towns across Illinois recover from the COVID-19 pandemic and build towards the future. Through the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act and the American Rescue Plan Illinois is receiving historic investments in local governments, infrastructure, health care, housing, and education… Continue Reading


12.09.21

Durbin, Joined By Lee & Grassley, Attempts To Pass Bipartisan Inspector General Access Act

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, today on the Senate floor requested unanimous consent (UC) to pass bipartisan legislation to expand the jurisdiction of the Department of Justice's (DOJ) Office of the Inspector General to include alleged DOJ attorney misconduct. Currently, the DOJ Inspector General (IG) has no authority to investigate professional misconduct by DOJ lawyers. DOJ is the only agency whose IG has such a jurisdictio… Continue Reading


12.09.21

Durbin, Blunt, Grassley, Bustos, Hinson Lead Bipartisan, Bicameral Effort To Fund Modernization Of Upper Mississippi & Illinois Rivers' Locks And Dams

WASHINGTON - Today, U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Senators Roy Blunt (R-MO) and Chuck Grassley (R-IA), along with U.S. Representatives Cheri Bustos (D-IL-17) and Ashley Hinson (R-IA-01), led a bicameral, bipartisan letter to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to prioritize the funding for construction of the Navigation and Ecosystem Sustainability Program (NESP) on the Upper Mississippi River System (UMRS) with the $2.5 billion for inland waterways provided in the Infrastru… Continue Reading


12.09.21

Durbin To Acting FDA Commissioner: Agency Is Three Months Past Court-Ordered Deadline To Regulate E-Cigarettes

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) today sent a letter to Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Acting Commissioner Dr. Janet Woodcock urging the FDA to complete its review of premarket tobacco product applications (PMTAs) for the millions of e-cigarette products that have fueled the youth vaping epidemic. In the letter, Durbin reiterated that the deadline for FDA's review was three months ago as mandated by a U.S. District Court Judge for Maryland. E-cigarette manufactur… Continue Reading


12.09.21

Durbin Meets With President Biden's Nominee To Lead FDA, Robert Califf

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) today met virtually with President Biden's nominee to lead the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Robert Califf. During their meeting, Durbin pressed Dr. Califf on his thoughts regarding FDA's overall tobacco strategy and its delays in several public health oversight policies to prevent and reduce tobacco use; Durbin's bipartisan drug pricing legislation, the Drug-price Transparency for Competition (DTC) Act; how to help terminally ill … Continue Reading


12.09.21

Durbin Speaks With Nominee For U.S. Army's Assistant Secretary For Acquisition, Logistics, And Technology

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) today spoke by phone with Doug Bush, who has been nominated by President Biden to be the U.S. Army's Assistant Secretary for Acquisition, Logistics, and Technology (ALT). During their conversation, Durbin received an update on the Army's Make/Buy Guidance, which helps boost work for arsenals across the country, and how the program is helping inform equipment purchasing. Durbin also encouraged Bush to utilize the Rock Island Arsenal to its… Continue Reading


12.09.21

On Senate Floor, Durbin Praises Build Back Better Expansion Of Pell Grant Program, Slams For-Profit College Taking Advantage Of Program

WASHINGTON - In a speech on the Senate floor, U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) highlighted how the Build Back Better Act will support college students by increasing the maximum Pell grant award by $550. The historic proposal would expand Pell grants and other forms of federal student aid to DACA students and help five million low-income students earn college degrees to build a better, more prosperous future. "It [Pell Grant program] was created in 1972 - almost 50 years ago. At the … Continue Reading


12.09.21

Judiciary Committee Advances Legislation To Remove Pacer Paywall, Increase Accessibility To Court Records

WASHINGTON - The Senate Judiciary Committee today advanced S. 2614, Open Courts Act of 2021, bipartisan legislation sponsored by Senators Rob Portman (R-OH) and Ron Wyden (D-OR) and cosponsored by Senator Josh Hawley (R-MO) and Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, by voice vote. This legislation-more commonly known as the "Free PACER" bill-would modernize the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts' electronic record system and eliminate the PACER p… Continue Reading


12.09.21

Durbin Meets With Navajo Nation On America's Red Rock Wilderness Act, Protecting Land In Utah

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) met virtually with members of the Navajo Nation and the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance to discuss building support for Durbin's America's Red Rock Wilderness Act, which would protect 8.4 million acres of land in Utah that is rich in archaeological resources and home to numerous rare plant and animal species. During their conversation, Durbin heard about the importance of the landscape and cultural resources in the Utah lands to the Nav… Continue Reading


12.08.21

Durbin: We Are More Prepared To Fight COVID-19 Variants Because Senate Democrats Passed The American Rescue Plan

WASHINGTON - In a speech on the Senate floor, U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) today outlined the historic steps Senate Democrats have already taken to improve our ability to combat the new COVID-19 Omicron variant-including passing the American Rescue Plan, which funded the production and distribution of life-saving vaccines and enhanced detection and tracking of new variants like Omicron. "Today we received preliminary findings that patients are better protected against Omicron… Continue Reading


12.07.21

Durbin, Duckworth Statement On Confirmation Of Gregory Harris To Be Central District Of Illinois U.S. Attorney

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, and U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) today released the following statement regarding the confirmation of Gregory Harris to be U.S. Attorney in the Central District of Illinois: "Having served for nearly 30 years as an Assistant U.S. Attorney, more than a decade in private practice, and several years in the Illinois Office of the State Appellate Defender, Greg Harris is well-qualified and a… Continue Reading


12.07.21

Durbin Briefs Illinois State Senators On Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal Wins

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) today met virtually with members of the Illinois State Senate Democratic Caucus to provide more details about the funding for Illinois included in the newly-signed Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA). Durbin spoke in detail about the bill's $17 billion included for Illinois and the additional billions in competitive grants that Illinois will be eligible for. Durbin and the lawmakers discussed using the funding to accelerate the … Continue Reading


12.07.21

Durbin Questions Witnesses At Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing On Closing The Detention Facility At Guantanamo Bay

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, today questioned Brigadier General John D. Baker during the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing entitled, "Closing Guantanamo: Ending 20 Years of Injustice," about pursuing plea agreements for those charged at the detention center at Guantanamo Bay, and why that is the most viable option for bringing a prompt resolution to the cases before the military commissions. Durbin noted that those char… Continue Reading


12.07.21

Durbin Delivers Opening Statement In Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing On Closing The Detention Center At Guantanamo Bay

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, today delivered an opening statement at the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing entitled, "Closing Guantanamo: Ending 20 Years of Injustice." In his opening statement, Durbin argued that every day that the detention center at Guantanamo Bay remains open, it damages our moral standing and credibility around the world, weakens our national security, and wastes taxpayer dollars. Key quotes: "… Continue Reading


12.06.21

Durbin: The Senate Must Be United In Condemning Threats Of Violence Against School Boards

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, today spoke on the Senate floor about the escalating violence and threats of violence against teachers, school officials, and school board members across the country. In October, Attorney General Merrick Garland directed the FBI and U.S. Attorneys' Offices to reach out to state and local law enforcement to address threats of violence made against school board members, teachers and workers in our … Continue Reading


12.06.21

Durbin, Duckworth Introduce Bill To Reauthorize The Abraham Lincoln National Heritage Area

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) today introduced the Abraham Lincoln National Heritage Area Reauthorization Act, which would authorize the Abraham Lincoln National Heritage Area (ALNHA) until 2038, an additional 15 years past the current expiration date of 2023. The bill would allow Illinoisans and Americans to visit and learn more about the historical and cultural impact of the ALNHA and Lincoln's legacy for years to come. "As … Continue Reading


12.02.21

Durbin Statement On Senate Passage Of Continuing Resolution

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, today released the following statement on Senate passage of the Continuing Resolution (CR), which will fund the federal government through February 18, 2022: "Keeping America's government open and functioning should never be a political issue. This time, Republicans delayed the bill over an anti-vaccine stunt to prevent Americans from staying safe during a deadly pandemic. "I'm glad… Continue Reading


12.02.21

Durbin Statement On Successful Discharge Vote For Rachael Rollins, Nominated To Be U.S. Attorney For The District Of Massachusetts

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, today released the following statement after the Senate voted to discharge Rachael S. Rollins, nominated to be United States Attorney for the District of Massachusetts, from the Senate Judiciary Committee by a vote of 50-47. In September, Rollins' nomination advanced out of Committee by a vote of 11-11. Under the provisions of S. Res. 27, Leader Schumer had to file a discharge motion on Rollins'… Continue Reading


12.02.21

Durbin Highlights Dangerous Dysfunction At Bureau Of Prisons, Calls On Attorney General Garland To Dismiss Director Carvajal

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, today spoke on the Senate floor about the unacceptable dysfunction within the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) and the urgent need for new leadership. Durbin pointed to egregious examples of misconduct by BOP staff highlighted in a recent Associated Press report, such as prison workers convicted of crimes including sexual abuse, murder, and introducing contraband into prisons. "It's a recurring pattern o… Continue Reading


12.02.21

Following School Shooting In Michigan, Durbin Calls For Passage Of Universal Background Check Legislation

WASHINGTON - On the Senate floor, U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, today joined U.S. Senators Chris Murphy (D-CT) and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) in requesting unanimous consent to pass H.R. 8, the Bipartisan Background Checks Act of 2021, which would close gaping loopholes in the background check system and require FBI background checks for nearly all gun sales. Durbin's speech follows the school shooting at Oxford High School in Michigan this… Continue Reading

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