Press Releases


Durbin Asks National Urban League to Support Effort to Protect Students and Taxpayers from Abuses in the For-profit College Industry

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - In a speech to the National Urban League, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today asked the organization to support the effort by the Obama Administration and members of Congress to protect students and taxpayers from abuses within the for-profit college industry. Acknowledging that many for-profit colleges are good actors and do important work, Durbin noted that the bad actors could cause us to repeat the mistakes of the subprime mortgage crisis by saddling a generation of y… Continue Reading


Durbin Questions Nuclear Experts at Senate Hearing

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today questioned the Chairman of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Gregory Jaczko, and the Department of Energy's Acting Assistant Secretary for Nuclear Energy, Dr. Peter Lyons, about the safety of nuclear power plants in the United States and the prospect of renewing the U.S.'s interest in research into the reprocessing of nuclear fuel - as is being done in countries like France, Britain and Russia. Last week, Durbin and Senator Mark K… Continue Reading


Durbin Chairs First-Ever Hearing on the Civil RIghts of American Muslims

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) chaired the first-ever Congressional hearing on the civil rights of American Muslims today where he highlighted the "First Freedom" - the freedom of religion - and the rights the Constitution affords all Americans. "Many of our nation's founders fled religious persecution, which is why our Constitution puts great importance on religious freedom."Durbin said. "Today, addressing anti-Muslim discrimination is an important c… Continue Reading


Durbin: Interchange Reform will Take Effect as Planned on July 21

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement today after Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said that interchange reform would take effect on July 21, 2011: "Chairman Bernanke reiterated to me today that the Federal Reserve is working diligently to finalize its rules in a timely fashion and that new interchange regulations will take effect on July 21st, one year after Wall Street Reform was signed into law," Durbin said. "On tha… Continue Reading


Durbin Meets with Postmaster General to Discuss Illinois Jobs

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today met with the U.S. Postal Service Postmaster General, Pat Donahoe, to discuss the financial condition of the Postal Service and a study on the possible consolidation of the mail processing operations performed at the Rockford Processing and Distribution Facility with those performed at the Postal Service's Carol Stream facility. Similar moves, which often have a negative impact on the local workforce, have been proposed in other Illinois… Continue Reading


Durbin to LaHood: Obligate Illinois Transportation Funds to Save Illinois Jobs

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today sent a letter to the Secretary of Transportation, Ray LaHood, urging him to obligate as soon as possible nearly $400 million in Illinois transportation funding. Obligating - making a legal commitment to allow a project to move forward - this funding could potentially keep eight Illinois projects safe from rescission under the House Republican's 2011 Budget plan. "Over the past two years, communities in Illinois have successfully com… Continue Reading


Durbin Urges Residents to Prepare for Flooding

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today urged Illinois residents in flood prone areas to take steps to protect their homes and businesses in advance of any flooding this year. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the Army Corps of Engineers are warning of possible heavy flooding this spring around the country and in parts of Illinois. "Minor flooding began last week along the Upper Mississippi River," said Durbin. "I have been in contact with th… Continue Reading


Durbin, Kirk Express Support of Quincy Appeal

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) today sent a letter to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) supporting the City of Quincy's appeal of the Commission's decision to dismiss the a permit application for the hydroelectric power plant at Lock and Dam 21. "We are writing to express our strong support for the City of Quincy's (Illinois) proposed hydroprower project and to urge the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to grant their request … Continue Reading


Durbin: Cuts to Head Start Will Devastate Low-Income Families and Stunt Economic Recovery

[AURORA] - Thousands of low-income children and their families will lose critical access to education, health, and support service programs as the result of drastic federal spending cuts passed by the House of Representatives, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) said today in Aurora. Funding for comprehensive early childhood services, including the Head Start program, is cut by more than 20 percent in the House spending bill (H.R.1) for the current fiscal year 2011, which was approved along party li… Continue Reading


Durbin to Chair First-Ever Hearing on the Civil Rights of American Muslims

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced today that he will hold the first-ever Congressional hearing on the civil rights of American Muslims on Tuesday, March 29, 2011. The hearing will be the first hearing before the Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights. Senator Durbin is the Subcommittee's Chairman. "Our Constitution protects the free exercise of religion for all Americans," Durbin said. "During the course … Continue Reading


Durbin and Quinn Announce Major Agreement to Advance High-Speed Rail in Illinois

CHICAGO - Work on the next phase of high-speed rail between Chicago and St. Louis is set to begin as the result of a $685 million construction agreement, Governor Pat Quinn and U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) said today. The federally funded project will create an estimated 6,200 direct and indirect jobs and move Illinois one step closer to faster trains and improved service along its signature high-speed route. Durbin and Quinn were joined at today's announcement by railroad workers and suppli… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces More Than $800,000 in FEMA Grants to additional Illinois Fire Departments

[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 awarded eight grants totaling $834,272 to fire departments and municipalities throughout Illinois. "Our nation's firefighters are called upon day after day to protect America's citizens," Durbin said. "As these brave men and women put themselves in harm's way, we must ensure that they are equipped with the best tools possible to … Continue Reading


Bipartisan Resolution Condemning Political Repression in Belarus Passes Senate

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - A bipartisan resolution condemning recent Belarusian elections as illegitimate and calling on the Belarusian regime to immediately release all political prisoners, unanimously passed the Senate late yesterday. The resolution also calls for a tightening of the of the list of Belarusian officials who are subject to U.S. and European Union travel and financial sanctions, new elections in Belarus that meet international standards, tightening of EU sanctions against the Belarusia… Continue Reading


Durbin and Corker Introduce Water for the World Act

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - A bipartisan group lead by Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Senator Bob Corker (R-TN) introduced the Water for the World Act late yesterday, a bill that bill builds on the success of the Paul Simon Water for the Poor Act by placing clean water in the forefront of America's development priorities, seeking to reach 100 million people around the world with sustainable first time access to clean water and sanitation within six years of enactment. The b… Continue Reading


Durbin, Kirk: President Issues Major Disaster Declaration for State of Illinois

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) today announced that President Obama has made a major disaster declaration for the State of Illinois triggering the release of federal funds to help communities recover from the severe winter storm and snow storm which occurs January 31 - February 3, 2011. "Although the snow has been cleared and the storms are long gone, residents and business owners are still facing a mountain of challenges. This Presidential disaster … Continue Reading


Durbin, Kirk Ask Attorney General to Clearly State that No Prisoners from Guantanamo Bay Will Be Transferred to Thomson

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) today asked Attorney General, Eric Holder, to clearly state that his Administration has no intention of transferring prisoners from Guantanamo Bay to Thomson Correctional Center so that Congress can focus its efforts on acquiring and operating Thomson as a maximum-security federal prison. The activation of Thomson Correctional Center by the federal government is expected to create more than 1,100 jobs and inject at least… Continue Reading


Durbin, Kirk Urge NASA to Select Adler Planetarium for Space Shuttle Orbiter

[WASHINGTON D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) are urging the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) to select Adler Planetarium for one of three retired space shuttle orbiters for public exhibition. "The Adler Planetarium is America's first Planetarium and a world-renowned science museum located on the shorelines of Lake Michigan. More than five million guests are welcomed at Museum Campus each year, and Chicago Museums create an annual economic im… Continue Reading


Durbin and Illinois Delegation to Meet with Governor Quinn to Discuss Illinois Job Creation and Investment

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and members of the Illinois Congressional Delegation met with the Governor of Illinois, Pat Quinn, to discuss ways in which the Delegation can work together to help create jobs and invest in Illinois. Prior to today's meeting with the Delegation, Durbin and Quinn met with the Administrator of the Federal Railroad Administration, Joe Szabo, to discuss the progress of high speed rail in Illinois. Last month, after the Governor of Florida re… Continue Reading


Response to the Wall Street Journal's Editorial on Swipe Fee Reform

Mr. DURBIN. Mr. President, I usually do not get up in the morning and race to read the editorial page of the Wall Street Journal. It is not part of my morning routine. I do not agree with them on most of the positions they have taken and I have found many times the statements they make are sometimes grossly inaccurate. This morning was no exception. They printed an editorial on the issue of interchange fees on debit cards. They had some critical things to say, which is their right, and my… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on the Passing of Jim Tyree

[Washington, DC] U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement today on the passing of Jim Tyree: "Jim Tyree's determination and positive view of life inspired me and all he met. I will never forget Jim walking into my office only a few weeks after a double-organ transplant to tell me he was diabetes-free for the first time in his adult life and urging me to support stem-cell research and diabetes research to spare others the ordeal he had borne. After all his many battl… Continue Reading

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