Press Releases


Durbin, Foster Discuss Need for Comprehensive Immigration Reform

[AURORA, IL] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Representative Bill Foster (D-IL-11) today visited Ginger Creek Community Church to provide a cross section of community leaders with a briefing on their efforts to enact comprehensive immigration reform and hear from participants regarding their perspective on why reform is needed. "Months ago, I sat down with seven of my colleagues from both sides of the aisle to tackle a difficult issue which has defied Congress for decades," Durbin … Continue Reading


Durbin, Schakowsky: SNAP Benefits Provide Critical Safety New for Country's Most Vulnerable

[CHICAGO] - As the House of Representatives threatens to slash funding for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Representative Jan Schakowsky (D-IL-09) met today with SNAP beneficiaries and program advocates to discuss SNAP's vital importance to the most vulnerable Americans. "At a time when one out of every seven households struggles to keep food on the table, SNAP has responded by providing over 47 million Americans with essential h… Continue Reading


Durbin and Kirk: Defense Appropriations Bill Will Help Ensure Rock Island Arsenal's Long-Term Strength

[ROCK ISLAND, IL] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) said today that the Department of Defense appropriations bill which passed the Senate Appropriations Committee yesterday will give the Rock Island Arsenal the support it needs to remain strong while transitioning into peacetime operations. The legislation, the first which Durbin has passed through the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee since being named chairman earlier this year, contains several provisions to ensure th… Continue Reading


Durbin, Blumenthal: With Adverse Event Reporting on the Rise, Legislation Needed to Protect Consumers of Dietary Supplements

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) today introduced legislation that would help consumers distinguish between dietary supplements that are safe and those that have potentially serious side-effects or drug interactions. Recent investigative reports by "USA Today" and "Rock Center" have exposed the lack of information about dietary supplement products while they are on store shelves. With no authority to require information about a dietary supp… Continue Reading


Durbin: THUD Bill Is the Latest Casualty of the Failed GOP Budget

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) spoke at a press conference today following a failed vote on the spending bill to fund the Department of Transportation and the Department of Housing and Urban Development for the 2014 fiscal year. Despite being passed out of the Senate Appropriations Committee by an overwhelmingly bipartisan vote of 22-8, the measure failed to reach the necessary 60-vote threshold by a vote of 54-43. "Standing behind us are some men and women in the buildi… Continue Reading


Durbin, Reed, Udall Call on Defense Department to Protect Servicemembers by Plugging Payday Loan Loophole

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - In an effort to protect soldiers and their families from abusive financial practices, U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), Jack Reed (D-CT), Mark Udall (D-CO) joined with twenty of their colleagues today in calling on Department of Defense (DOD) Secretary Chuck Hagel to close a loophole that allows lenders to restructure their traditional loans to avoid a DOD rule limiting the amount of interest on consumer credit products sold to servicemembers. The Military Lending Act -… Continue Reading


Durbin, Bustos Meet with Federal Bureau of Prisons Director to Discuss Activation of Thomson Prison

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Representative Cheri Bustos (IL-17) today met with the Director of the Department of Justice's Bureau of Prisons, Charles Samuels, to discuss the activation of Thomson Correctional Center. On July 18, Durbin and Bustos announced that the Senate Appropriations Committee, of which Durbin is a member, had approved funding for the activation of Thomson at the level that was requested by President Obama in his fiscal year 2014 budget propo… Continue Reading


Durbin and Lee Introduce Smarter Sentencing Act

Washington, D.C. - With federal prison populations skyrocketing and nearly half of the nation's federal inmates serving sentences for drug offenses, Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL), Senator Mike Lee (R-UT) have introduced the Smarter Sentencing Act, to modernize our drug sentencing polices by giving federal judges more discretion in sentencing those convicted of non-violent offenses. Making these incremental and targeted changes could save taxpayers billions in the first years of en… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces A More Than $87,000 Investment in Illinois First-Responder Capabilities

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced today that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), part of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), has awarded $87,168 in grants to fire departments throughout Illinois. Today's funding will help raise public awareness about fire safety and prevention, and support and improve the capability of the departments to respond to fires and other types of emergencies. "Our nation's firefighters are called upon day after day to prot… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on House Passage of Bill to Lower Rates for All Students

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement today after the House passed a bipartisan bill to lower interest rates for 100% of borrowers who have taken out, or will take out, a new federal student loan after July 1, 2013. "This agreement will ensure students loan rates will fall below the 6.8 percent rate that kicked in on July 1," said Senator Durbin. "Once again we've shown that when both sides work together, we can reach fair an… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on the Confirmation of B. Todd Jones to be the Director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement today after the Senate confirmed B. Todd Jones to be the Director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Although the ATF director position began requiring Senate confirmation in 2006, both President Bush and President Obama's nominees to the position were blocked, and the agency had not yet had a Senate-confirmed director. "Over the last 7 years, the gun lobby has done eve… Continue Reading


Durbin: Energy Drink Companies Should Not Market Their Products to Children Under 18

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) delivered opening remarks at a hearing of the Senate Commerce Committee examining the potential health risks of energy drinks and the marketing of these products to youth. Senator Durbin's remarks as prepared are below. A live webcast of today's hearing is available on the Commerce Committee website: Durbin coauthored a report entitled "What's all the Buzz about?" that shows inconsistencies in the labe… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces a $51,000 Rural Development Grant for Clifton, IL

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture has awarded a $51,000 Rural Business Enterprise Grant to the Village of Clifton, Illinois. Today's funding will be used to install a sewer line extension that will help benefit local small businesses. "Today's funding will help create local jobs during the construction of a new sewer line extension which, once completed, will help support Clifton's small business community," Durbin sa… Continue Reading


Durbin: Swipe Fee Ruling a Victory for Consumers, Small Businesses

Washington, D.C. - Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement today after the Federal District Court in Washington, D.C. threw out the Federal Reserve's regulations governing swipe fees, saying the Fed disregarded congressional intent and "inappropriately" inflated debit card transaction fees by billions of dollars. "Today's decision by the Federal District Court is a victory for consumers and small business around the country and will lead to lower interch… Continue Reading


Durbin to Raise Concerns Over Energy Drinks at Commerce Committee Hearing

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) will deliver an opening statement today at a hearing of the Senate Commerce Committee examining the potential health risks of energy drinks and the marketing of these products to youth. The hearing will also present an opportunity for members to review an investigative report, released by Durbin and U.S. Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) and Ed Markey (D-MA) that revealed evidence of energy drink marketing practices that t… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces More Than $1.6 Million at Chicagoland Airports

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced today that the Department of Transportation (DOT) has awarded $1,643,138 in funding to the state of Illinois for infrastructure improvements and upgrades at two airports in the Chicagoland region. "Today's funding will help these airports continue serving their users safely and efficiently by making needed improvements and upgrades," Durbin said. The following investments in Illinois' transportation infrastructure were made und… Continue Reading


Durbin Raises Concerns Regarding Safety of Dietary Supplements on Senate Floor

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today spoke on the Senate floor regarding questions raised by an article published in USA Today that featured a dietary supplement that contained the chemical DNP - a hazardous pesticide that was used as a weight-loss drug before it was declared toxic for humans. Durbin spoke about the need to ensure that consumers are able to make informed decisions, and that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has the information it needs to respond quick… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces More Than $55,000 Investment in Illinois Communities to Create Jobs and Boost Development

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that the U.S. Department of Commerce's (DOC) Economic Development Administration (EDA) has awarded $55,465 in Economic Development District Planning funding to the Blackhawk Hills Resource Conservation and Development Commission in Rock Falls, Illinois to create jobs and boost economic development in the region. "Today's funding will help Northwest Illinois create and implement a plan for continued economic growth - one tha… Continue Reading


Durbin, Duckworth: Change Needed to Help Servicemembers with Student Loan Assistance Programs

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - With average student loan debt for active-duty servicemembers at more than $25,000, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Representative Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) today introduced a bill that would fix a provision in the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) - created in 1940 - that unintentionally discourages servicemembers from consolidating or refinancing pre-service student loans. For servicemembers with Perkins or Federal Family Education Loans, consolidation of pre-s… Continue Reading


Senators Introduce Bill to Study Effects of Petroleum Coke

WASHINGTON - Four U.S. senators introduced legislation today to require a study of the health, environmental and safety effects of petroleum coke, a byproduct of petroleum refining that is used in energy production. The Petroleum Coke Transparency and Public Health Study Act, introduced by Richard Durbin, D-Ill.; Sens. Carl Levin, D-Mich.; Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich.; and Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, is a companion to legislation introduced in the House earlier this year by Rep. Gary Peters, D-Mich. … Continue Reading

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