Press Releases


Durbin Statement on the Resignation of U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement today after Patrick Fitzgerald, U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois, announced his resignation: "When I first interviewed Patrick Fitzgerald for U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois, he gave me his word that he would not show any political favoritism in his professional duties. He kept his word." "His aggressive prosecution of wrongdoing - including politicians in both par… Continue Reading


Durbin, Kirk: White House Nominates Durkin to Fill Federal Judgeship in Northern District

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) today announced that President Obama has nominated Thomas Durkin to fill a pending vacancy on the U.S. District Court in the Northern District of Illinois. "Thomas Durkin is an outstanding candidate for a federal judgeship in the Northern District and I am pleased that President Obama has nominated him today. Throughout his career, he has demonstrated strong leadership in his community and a solid commitment to publi… Continue Reading


Durbin: Congress Approves Legislation That Will Continue to Help Illinois Businesses Succeed in Global Economy and Create Jobs Here at Home

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today said that bipartisan legislation to reauthorize the Export-Import Bank will support thousands of Illinois jobs and help Illinois businesses, both large and small, succeed in the global economy. The Export-Import Bank is responsible for supporting 288,000 jobs at more than 2,700 American companies - 113 of them in Illinois including 80 small businesses. Today's legislation, which passed the House of Representatives, last week, was appro… Continue Reading


Senate Confirms Tharp to Fill Federal Judgeship in Northern District

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Mark Kirk (R-IL) and Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that the Senate has confirmed John "Jay" Tharp for a federal judgeship in the U.S. District Court in the Northern District of Illinois. The Senate approved Tharp by a vote of 86-1. Senators Kirk and Durbin have worked closely together since early 2011 to fill the two judicial vacancies in the Northern District of Illinois. Under Senate tradition for Illinois, the senator from the party not in control o… Continue Reading


Durbin Calls for Passage of Safe Chemicals Act

[CHICAGO, IL] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today called for Senate passage of legislation that would overhaul an antiquated law that has left American families exposed to dangerous toxic chemicals included in everyday household products and furnishings and given the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) little recourse against the aggressive chemical companies that have exploited the lack of oversight. "The U.S. EPA, wittingly or unwittingly, has allowed the manufacturers of toxic … Continue Reading


Durbin, Vitter Commend USDA Rule to Close Loophole and Regulate Online Puppy Sales

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and David Vitter (R-LA) today commended the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) for closing a loophole that allows domestic puppy mills selling puppies via the internet to escape regulation and avoid inspection. This rule, which will specifically apply to large breeders, is an important step towards ensuring that pets sold over the Internet are treated humanely and receive proper care. La… Continue Reading


Illinois / Iowa Senators Introduce Bill to Require Strategic Plan for Workload Increases at Rock Island Arsenal

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), Mark Kirk (R-IL), Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and Tom Harkin (D-IA) introduced bipartisan legislation that would help increase the workload and help ensure the long-term health of Rock Island Arsenal. The Army Arsenal Strategic Workload Enhancement Act of 2012 would require the Army to create a strategic plan to increase workload and ensures arsenals around the nation are considered for military contracts Defense-wide rather than just within the … Continue Reading


Durbin Chairs Hearing on FCC Budget

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) chaired a hearing today before the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Financial Services and Government on the President's FY13 budget request for the Federal Communication Commission (FCC). "Our nation's communications system enables us to keep in touch with friends and family; enjoy endless forms of entertainment; stay up to date on the news of the day; and to participate in the global economy," Durbin said. "The FCC ensu… Continue Reading


Durbin: Transportation Secretary's Visit Underscores Importance of Transportation Bill

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), a member of the transportation bill Conference Committee, today spoke with Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood about the importance of passing a transportation bill that includes funding for a new competitive grant program for projects of regional and national significance. This grant program would give Illinois and Iowa the opportunity to seek additional federal funding for the I-74 Bridge project which Secretary LaHood is scheduled to visi… Continue Reading


Durbin Calls on Members of Illinois Senate to Support Bill to Improve Security in East St. Louis

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today called on members of the Illinois Senate to support legislation introduced by Illinois State Senate Majority Leader James Clayborne that would strengthen local policing efforts and help improve the safety and security of East St. Louis and three nearby Metro East communities. Durbin added that, as a member of Congress, it is extremely rare for him to advocate for the passage of state legislation - a move he does not take lightly. "… Continue Reading


Durbin Calls for Illinois Postal Facilities to Remain Open GIving House of Representatives More Time to Act on Bipartisan Senate Bill

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today called on Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe to keep Illinois post offices and mail processing facilities open in order to give the House of Representatives additional time to act on the comprehensive bipartisan legislation passed by the Senate to reform the postal service. Durbin cited the important role these facilities play in the Postal Service's operations and Illinois' economy. "In spite of Senate action, it is my understandi… Continue Reading


Senate Confirms Lee to Fill Federal Judgeships in Northern District

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and a representative from U.S. Senator Mark Kirk's (R-IL) office today announced that the Senate has confirmed John Lee for a federal judgeship on the U.S. District Court in the Northern District of Illinois. Durbin and Kirk have also worked closely on the nomination of John Tharp, who is expected to receive a confirmation vote later this month to fill a second vacancy in the Northern District. Prior to the vote, Durbin spoke in favor of the… Continue Reading


Durbin Chairs Field Hearing on Ohio Voting Law

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights, chaired a field hearing today examining the impact of Ohio's new voting law, HB 194, which restricts early voting, eliminates the requirement that poll workers direct voters to the proper precinct, and makes it harder to vote absentee. Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown joined Durbin at the hearing. "If the goal of Ohio's new voting law … Continue Reading


Durbin Announces Over $1.8 Million for Rural Development in Marion County

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Rural Development division has awarded a loan of $1,156,000 and a grant of $653,200 for the Northeast Marion County Water Company under the Water and Waste Disposal Loan and Grant Program. The project involves the construction of 46 miles to an existing water line, providing an additional 110 Illinoisans with safe drinking water. The Northeast Marion County Water Company curr… Continue Reading


Durbin and Kirk Express Strong Concern About Disposal of Toxic Chemicals in Clinton Landfill

[CLINTON, IL] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) will send a letter today to U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 5 Administrator Susan Hedman expressing their strong concern about the proposed industrial waste facility at Clinton Landfill, Durbin announced at a news conference at Clinton City Hall. "With our letter, we're letting the EPA know the importance of protecting the Mahomet Valley Aquifer and commending the decision to further evaluate the safety of disp… Continue Reading


Durbin "Likes" Facebook Decision to Join Global Network Initiative As an Observer

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement today after Facebook announced that it would be joining the Global Network Initiative (GNI) as an observer. "Facebook is presented with the significant human rights issues that the Global Network Initiative is designed to help companies address. For years, I've urged the social network giant to join the GNI and take other steps to protect the human rights of its users," Durbin said. "Facebook h… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on NFL Player Suspensions Bounty Investigation

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement today after the NFL announced the suspension of four players for their involvement in the New Orleans Saints' bounty program: "Today's announcement by the NFL is a positive step that shows that the League is taking seriously the issue of bounty programs," Durbin said. "I have spoken with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell and I will meet with him in the coming weeks to discuss additional steps the … Continue Reading


Senators Respond to New Data on Tobacco Tax Loophole

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), Tom Harkin (D-IA), Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) expressed concern about the findings of a study released today by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) revealing more than $1.3 billion in lost state and federal revenue by tobacco manufacturers relabeling roll-your-own tobacco as pipe tobacco. The lower tax rate for pipe tobacco encourages its use as a source of cheap cigarettes and diminishes the impact fe… Continue Reading


Durbin Meets with Transportation Officials to Discuss Illinois Priorities for Federal Transportation Bill

[CHICAGO, IL] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) met with key transportation leaders in Chicago today to discuss Illinois' priorities and the stark differences between the House and Senate transportation bills. Durbin and U.S. Representative Jerry Costello were the only Illinoisans named to the joint Senate-House Conference Committee tasked with working out the differences between the Senate (S.1813) version and House (H.R.4348) version of a national transportation funding bill. "As the roa… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces Nearly $117 Million in HUD Funding for Illinois Communities and Housing Agencies

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that Illinois communities and housing agencies will receive $116,966,851 in grant funding through four programs administered by Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Community Development Block Grants The Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) program provides annual grants to states and local governments to develop viable urban communities by providing decent housing and a suitable l… Continue Reading

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