Press Releases


Durbin, Grassley Introduce Bipartisan Comprehensive Criminal Justice Reform Package

WASHINGTON-A bipartisan group of senators today reintroduced the Sentencing Reform and Corrections Act of 2017 to recalibrate prison sentences for nonviolent drug offenders, target violent and career criminals and save taxpayer dollars. The legislation permits more judicial discretion at sentencing for offenders with minimal criminal histories and helps inmates successfully reenter society, while tightening penalties for violent criminals and preserving key prosecutorial tools for law enforceme… Continue Reading


Durbin, Colleagues Call On President Trump To Prioritize Disaster Relief Efforts For Puerto Rican Islands Of Vieques And Culebra

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) joined Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and 14 of his Senate colleagues to call on President Trump to step up disaster recovery efforts on the Puerto Rican islands of Vieques and Culebra after the islands were devastated by Hurricanes Irma and Maria. Citing in their letter the remoteness of the islands and reports that residents have been "without running water, power, gasoline or communications for more than a week", the senators wrote to President T… Continue Reading


Durbin Pushes For Quick Action On Bipartisan Dream Act During Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing On DACA

WASHINGTON - During a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), Ranking Member of the Senate Immigration Subcommittee, warned his Senate colleagues that the deportation clock is ticking for approximately 800,000 DACA recipients. He also urged them to support the bipartisan Dream Act that he and Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) have introduced, which would allow immigrant students who grew up in t… Continue Reading


Durbin: Congress Is Complicit In Gun Violence If We Continue This Course Of Inaction

WASHINGTON-Following the tragic mass shooting in Las Vegas, Nevada, that killed at least 59 people and injured more than 500, U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) challenged his Senate colleagues to not just be casual observers of gun violence, but to do their job and pass laws that make America safer. In a speech on the Senate floor, Durbin called on Congress to pass a universal background checks bill and commonsense gun laws to help prevent the next mass shooting. "Gun violence is… Continue Reading


Durbin, Duckworth Announce More Than 790,000 In Federal Funding To Strengthen Math & Science Skills Of Illinois Students

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) today announced that the U.S. Department of Education has awarded Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, Family Centered Educational Agency, Inc., and Carl Sandburg College a total of $791,814 through the Upward Bound Math and Science program. The Upward Bound Math and Science program is designed to strengthen the math and science skills of participating students. The goal of the program is to help students recognize … Continue Reading


Durbin Calls On Trump Administration To Extend DACA Deadline

CHICAGO - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today called on the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to extend the October 5th Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) renewal deadline and encouraged eligible DACA recipients to file their renewal applications as soon as possible to make the deadline. Under the arbitrary deadline set by the Trump Administration, current DACA recipients whose status expires between Sept. 5, 2017, and March 5, 2018 must apply to renew their DACA status by Thurs… Continue Reading


Durbin: We Must Do More For Puerto Rico During Humanitarian Crisis

CHICAGO - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today met with leaders in the Puerto Rican community to hear about local efforts to provide aid and call on President Trump to speed federal assistance to Puerto Rico following Hurricane Maria. Earlier this week, Durbin joined a group of Senators in a letter to President Trump calling on his administration to issue a full Disaster Declaration for the entire island of Puerto Rico and take a series of steps to coordinate the federal response in Puerto Rico… Continue Reading


Durbin, Duckworth Press AG Secretary To Quickly Provide Puerto Rico With Food Aid

CHICAGO - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) joined Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) and five additional colleagues in a letter to U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue to request that he use all available resources to swiftly provide Puerto Rico with much needed food aid. In the letter, the senators wrote, "The devastation caused by Hurricane Maria has left behind a humanitarian crisis in Puerto Rico, with millions of people without power and many fam… Continue Reading


Durbin, Brown Caution Purdue University Amid Bid To Purchase Predatory For-Profit College

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Sherrod Brown (D-OH) today cautioned Purdue University President Mitch Daniels of Kaplan University's shameful record as part of a for-profit college industry that has become known for systemic fraud and predatory practices. In a letter to President Daniels, Durbin and Brown stressed that Purdue's embrace of Kaplan through their bid to purchase the for-profit giant poses major risks for Purdue's current students and the institution's reputation as… Continue Reading


Durbin, Colleagues Introduce Legislation To Ensure Transparency & Accountability In DEA Quotas For Prescription Opioid Painkillers

WASHINGTON - As the nation suffers from a national public health emergency in the form of an opioid epidemic that took the lives of nearly 50,000 Americans last year, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) joined Senator Edward J. Markey (D-MA) today to introduce legislation, the Opioid Quota Openness, Transparency, and Awareness Act (Opioid QuOTA Act), to shed light on the secretive process by which the pharmaceutical companies gain approval to produce the deadly opioid painkillers. The Drug Enforce… Continue Reading


Durbin Pushes For Protection Against Harmful Pollution In East Chicago

WASHINGTON - Following a recent Chicago Tribune article, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today pressed the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and SunCoke Energy to address SunCoke Energy's Indiana Harbor coke-making facility's violations and contributions to Chicago's air pollution. Indiana Harbor has been cited by the EPA six times since 2010 for violations including high levels of sulfur dioxide, particulate matter, and lead. Yet, the EPA has not yet taken action against Indiana Harbor Co… Continue Reading


Durbin, Duckworth, Colleagues To Trump: We Must Do More For Puerto Rico And U.S. Virgin Islands

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) joined Senators Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Bill Nelson (D-FL), Chuck Schumer (D-NY), and 35 additional colleagues in a letter to President Trump to express deep concern about the situation in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. In the letter, the senators wrote, "We write to express deep concern about the dire humanitarian situation in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. In Puerto Rico, Hurricane Maria recently kn… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement On Trump Administration Decision To Slash Refugee Resettlement Quota

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), Ranking Member of the Senate Immigration Subcommittee, today released the following statement after meeting with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Acting Secretary Elaine Duke, who confirmed that the Trump Administration has decided to allow the resettlement of no more than 45,000 refugees in the United States next year. This will bring the number of refugees allowed into the United States to the lowest level… Continue Reading


Durbin, Franken, King, Polis, Sinema Introduce Bicameral Legislation To Help Make College Textbooks More Affordable

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), Al Franken (D-MN), and Angus King (I-ME) along with U.S. Representatives Jared Polis (D-CO-02) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ-09) today introduced bicameral legislation designed to help students manage costs by making high quality textbooks easily accessible to students, professors, and the public for free. This bill, known as the Affordable College Textbook Act, would create a competitive grant program to support the creation and expand the use of open c… Continue Reading


Durbin: Latest GOP Health Care Repeal Bill Creates Problems For Every American Family

WASHINGTON-Following announcements from numerous Republican Senators in opposition to their party's latest effort to repeal health care, U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) today called on his Republican colleagues to drop their partisan attempt to ram through health care repeal. In a speech on the Senate floor, Durbin urged Congressional Republicans to instead focus on ways to strengthen America's health care system. As the month of September comes to an end, the U.S. Congress must … Continue Reading


Durbin Statement On The Succeed Act

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), ranking member of the Senate Immigration Subcommittee, released the following statement on new immigration legislation announced today by U.S. Senators Thom Tillis (R-NC) and James Lankford (R-OK): I appreciate that my colleagues recognize the need to pass legislation giving a path to citizenship to Dreamers, young immigrants who were brought here as children and grew up in this country-so do 75% of the American people. Unfortunately th… Continue Reading


Durbin Discusses Latest Disastrous Republican Plan To Repeal Affordable Care Act

CHICAGO - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today discussed the latest Republican plan to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and the impact it would have on Illinois patients and health care providers. Senate Republicans are rushing to vote on the Cassidy-Graham repeal bill this week - despite the fact that final bill text is still not available, last-minute changes are still being made in secret, and the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office has not had enough time to provide an analysis of … Continue Reading


Durbin, Brown, Reed, Blumenthal, Markey, Franken Introduce Legislation To Reduce Youth Tobacco Use, Close Tax Loopholes

WASHINGTON-U.S Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D- IL) and U.S. Senators Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Jack Reed (D-RI), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Ed Markey (D-MA) and Al Franken (D-MN) announced the Tobacco Tax Equity Act of 2017 which would help reduce tobacco use by closing loopholes in the tax code that have long been exploited by the tobacco industry to avoid regulation and taxes for their products. This legislation would apply tax parity across all tobacco products, including e-cigarettes. Inc… Continue Reading


Durbin Urges MLB To Extend Safety Netting At All Ballparks

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) today wrote to Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred, urging him to push for extended safety netting at all 30 major league ballparks. Full text of Durbin's letter: September 21, 2017 Mr. Rob Manfred Commissioner Major League Baseball 245 Park Avenue New York, New York Dear Commissioner Manfred: The latest tragic incident of a young child struck by a foul ball at Yankee Stadium should be a clarion call to professional ba… Continue Reading


Durbin, Scott, Menendez, Young, Donnelly, Duckworth Introduce Bipartisan Legislation To Protect Children In Federally-Assisted Housing From Lead Exposure

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), Tim Scott (R-SC), Bob Menendez (D-NJ) Todd Young (R-IN), Joe Donnelly (D-IN) and Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) today introduced the Lead-Safe Housing for Kids Act of 2017, which would require the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to adopt prevention measures and update its lead regulations to protect children from the risk of lead exposure. Since the enactment of federal lead policies in the 1990's, lead poisoning rates have fallen dramati… Continue Reading

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