Press Releases


Durbin, Bean Commend President for Commitment to Lovell Health Care Center

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Congresswoman Melissa Bean (D-IL) today praised President Obama's decision to support legislative authority to the Navy and the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to jointly operate the new "Captain James A. Lovell Federal Health Care Center". Language included in the budget summary of the VA signals the intent of the Administration to offer specific language regarding the Lovell Health Care Center. It is expected that… Continue Reading


Durbin Introduces Lamont at Senate Armed Services Hearing

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today introduced President Obama's choice to be Assistant Secretary for Manpower and Reserve Affairs within the Department of the Army, Tom Lamont, to the Senate Armed Services Committee. "The Army has soldiers deployed around the world. The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan create tremendous strain on our soldiers and their families," said Durbin. "The Army needs leaders like Tom Lamont right now. With years of experience i… Continue Reading


Durbin Works with Leahy to Secure Additional $50 Million for Global Fund to Fight Aids, Tuberculosis and Malaria

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced today that he, along with Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT), has secured $50 million for the Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. The funds will be included in the supplemental spending package that the Senate will consider next week. Today's funds are in addition to $50 million Durbin had already secured for FY09. "Today there are over 33 million people worldwide living with HIV. Every year, more t… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces More Than $5.2 Million in Recovery Act Funding for Illinois Airports

[WASHINGTON, DC] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced today that the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) has awarded $5,281,580 in funding through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to the state of Illinois for airport improvements. "Rehabilitation of airport infrastructure will put people to work immediately on projects that will help Illinois airports serve travelers safely and efficiently," said Durbin. The following airports will receive funding… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces $3.55 Million in Recovery Act and General EPA Funding for Environmental Cleanup in Illinois

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that Illinois will receive a total of $3.55 million in funding through the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) grant program and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act for the assessment and cleanup of properties where hazardous chemical or pollutants may be present. The funding will go toward the renewal and revitalization of distressed industrial and commercial sites, with a goal of turning problem p… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on Response to Severe Storms in Southern Illinois

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today made the following statement after Governor Pat Quinn issued a state disaster declaration for three Southern Illinois counties - Franklin, Jackson and Williamson - to help residents recover from severe storms that swept through the area on Friday. "Earlier today, I spoke with Governor Quinn about ongoing state and local efforts to clean up from last night's powerful storm," said Durbin. "As recovery efforts contin… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces $3.8 Million in Recovery Act Funding for Illinois Airport Security

[WASHINGTON, DC] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced today that the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has awarded a $3,860,677.60 in funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to streamline baggage screening and enhance security capabilities at Abraham Lincoln Capitol Airport in Springfield and Chicago O'Hare International Airport. The funding distribution will be determined at a later date based on plans to be submitted by each airport. "Tod… Continue Reading


Durbin Passes Gavel of Crime and Drugs Subcommittee to Specter; Resumes Leadership of Human Rights Subcommittee

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin today made the following statement about Senator Arlen Specter's (D-PA) role on the Judiciary Committee: "Over the past several days, Senator Reid, Senator Leahy, Senator Specter and I have had a number of conversations about ways to best utilize Senator Specter's talents and experience in our Caucus." "To that end, I have offered the gavel of the Crime and Drugs Subcommittee to Senator Specter who has been a leader on criminal justice issues… Continue Reading


Durbin On President Obama's Budget

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) said the budget President Obama delivered to Congress today restores responsibility and makes critical investments in the future of the country. The President's budget will cut taxes for 4.8 million families across the state; give $1.2 billion for Illinois schools, students and teachers; and direct $4.5 billion to help families pay for college. "We've inherited a mess - the result of mistaken policies, misplaced … Continue Reading


Mortgage Foreclosures

Delivered on the floor of the United States Senate Madam President, there was a debate last week on the floor of the Senate about the mortgage foreclosure crisis facing America. It was estimated a year ago we were going to lose 2 million homes to mortgage foreclosure. The new estimate from Moody's is 8 million homes. What does that mean? It means one out of every six home mortgages will face foreclosure. That is a national crisis. It is at the heart of this recession. The problem,… Continue Reading


Durbin Introduces Bill to Eliminate the Practice of Child Marriages Overseas

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) introduced legislation today which seeks to end the harmful practice of child marriage oversees. The International Protecting Girls by Preventing Child Marriage Act would require the U.S. Government to develop an integrated, strategic approach to reduce, and ultimately end, the practice of child marriage. "As I've travelled the world, I've always thought the way a country treats women and children says a lot about its c… Continue Reading


Durbin, Snowe and Lincoln Introduce Affordable Health Insurance Plan for Small Businesses

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL), Senator Olympia Snowe (R-Maine), and Senator Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.) today introduced legislation - for consideration in the upcoming Congressional health care reform debate - designed to make insurance more available and affordable for the 47.0 million employees of the nation's 5.9 million small businesses and for 14.0 million self-employed individuals. A diverse coalition of stakeholders from across the political sp… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on Announcement of New CPSC Nominees

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement today after President Obama announced his intent to nominate Inez Tenenbaum as the new Chair of the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) and Robert Adler as a new CPSC Commissioner. The President also announced a 71 percent funding increase for the consumer safety agency over President' Bush's FY07 budget; a nearly $2 million increase over the funding democrats secured last year. "W… Continue Reading


Durbin, Capps Introduce Legislation to Provide Medical Treatment for Disaster Victims

[WASHINGTON, DC] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Representative Lois Capps (D-CA) introduced legislation to guarantee emergency treatment for victims affected by a major public health disaster, regardless of their health insurance status or ability to pay. The Public Health Emergency Response Act (PHERA), first introduced by Durbin and Capps in July 2008, would make certain every American could receive the medical treatment they need in the immediate aftermath of events… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces $589,531 in Recovery Act Funding for NIH Research in Illinois

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that Illinois will receive $589,531 in funding through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. These National Institutes of Health grants, allocated by the Department of Health and Human Services, will support biomedical research and training. The following programs in Illinois will receive funding: • Northwestern University: $68,625 in funding to investigate whether the use of endothelial proge… Continue Reading


Durbin: Legislation Needed to Repair Rail Transit System for Chicago and Rest of Nation

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that he is drafting legislation - for consideration in the next surface transportation bill - that will set a goal of bringing the nation's largest transit systems into a state of good repair. According to a study requested by Durbin and released today by the Federal Transit Administration (FTA), 1/3 of the facilities, stations and vehicles used in the seven largest rail transit systems - Chicago, Boston, Ne… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on Mortgage Bankruptcy Proposal

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) made the following statement regarding his proposal to allow millions of at-risk homeowners prevent foreclosures by modifying the terms of their mortgages in bankruptcy proceedings. That proposal was voted down, 45-51. "While I'm disappointed with the outcome of today's vote, I'll continue to bring this issue to the floor until the senate decides to put the interests of homeowners above the interest of bankers." "Wh… Continue Reading


The Confirmation of Joseph Szabo

Delivered on the floor of the United States Senate Mr. President, I would like to congratulate Mr. Joseph Szabo on his confirmation as the next Administrator of the Federal Railroad Administration. Joe Szabo has made a significant contribution to my State of Illinois, and I believe he is going to bring great success to the Department of Transportation. Joe Szabo understands better than most the long days, unpredictable schedules, and sometimes hazardous working conditions that come with… Continue Reading


Supporting the Budget Resolution

Delivered on the floor of the United States Senate Mr. President, I thank the chairman of the Senate Budget Committee, Senator Conrad of North Dakota, not only for yielding but also for his leadership in the preparation of this important document. The budget resolution is a blueprint. We pass it and then we go to work with the individual parts of it in the appropriations bills. But we have to get this done first because the budget resolution tells us how much we can spend in total. Once… Continue Reading


Durbin: Senate Confirms Illinois' Szabo and Rivkin for DOT Positions

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced the Senate approval of Joseph Szabo to be the Administrator of the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) and Bob Rivkin to be the Department of Transportation General Counsel. "Joe Szabo has a long and distinguished career as an advocate for sound rail transportation policy," said Durbin. "He now brings his passion for the railroad industry and his experience with rail labor to the national stage. I am h… Continue Reading

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