Press Releases

02.29.16

Durbin Calls for Face-to-Face with VA Secretary to Discuss Ongoing Problems at Hines VA Hospital

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - After an independent federal agency issued a report detailing serious deficiencies with the VA Office of Inspector General (OIG) investigation into whistleblower allegations of wait times and delays in veterans' access to mental health care at Hines VA Hospital, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) asked Secretary McDonald to meet personally to discuss steps that may be necessary to provide quality, timely care for veterans and uphold transparency and accountability within the De… Continue Reading


02.29.16

As Senate Begins Debate on Legislation to Combat Opioid & Heroin Abuse, Durbin & King Introduce Bill to Expand Access to Substance Abuse Treatment Under Medicaid

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - This week, as the Senate prepares to begin debate on legislation to combat opioid and heroin abuse, U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Angus King (I-ME) introduced legislation to expand access to substance abuse treatment for vulnerable, underserved populations. The Medicaid Coverage for Addiction Recovery Expansion (Medicaid CARE) Act would modify the Medicaid Institutions for Mental Disease (IMD) Exclusion policy - a decades-old policy that restricts Medicaid coverage of… Continue Reading


02.26.16

Illinois Delegation Members Call on President to Provide Federal Relief for Communities Impacted by December Storms & Flooding

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) today joined by the entire Illinois Congressional Delegation in support of Governor Bruce Rauner's request for federal assistance to help the counties that were hardest-hit following the storms and severe flooding that began on December 23, 2015 and continued through January 13, 2016. Preliminary Damage Assessments have determined that Illinois communities experienced significant uninsured losses and widespread property d… Continue Reading


02.25.16

Durbin: The American People Have Already Spoken to Give President Obama the Authority to Nominate a Supreme Court Justice

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) spoke on the United States Senate Floor for the third time this week to call on Senate Republicans to uphold their Constitutional obligation to consider the President's nominee to fill the vacancy on the Supreme Court. "Three years and three months ago the American people chose a President. By a margin of five million votes, Barack Obama defeated Mitt Romney for President of the United States. They made their selection. Did they elect President Ob… Continue Reading


02.25.16

Senators to Treasury: Stop Corporate Tax Dodgers

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - As more and more corporations are announcing intentions to shirk their tax responsibility, seven U.S. Senators today said that more needs to be done to stop corporate tax dodgers. In a letter to Treasury Secretary Jack Lew, they urged the department to expedite rules to limit the use of earnings stripping and other tax avoidance schemes that are often used by foreign-controlled U.S. corporations following an inversion. Senators signing on to today's letter include: U… Continue Reading


02.25.16

Durbin, Cardin Introduce ‘CLEAR Act’ to Ensure Safer Drinking Water for American Communities

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Ben Cardin (D-MD) today introduced new legislation, the Copper and Lead Evaluation, Assessment and Reporting Act of 2016 (CLEAR Act), to better protect the American public from being poisoned by its drinking water supplies. The CLEAR Act directs the Environmental Protection Agency to develop new ways to improve the reporting, testing and monitoring of lead and copper levels in America's drinking water, addressing an urgent need brou… Continue Reading


02.24.16

Durbin: Senate GOP Refusal to Meet with Supreme Court Nominee a New Low

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today spoke on the floor of the Senate to call on Senate Republicans to uphold their Constitutional obligation to consider the President's nominee to fill the vacancy on the Supreme Court. Durbin read a passage from Article II, Section 2 of the Constitution stating that the President "shall nominate, and by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, shall appoint….Judges of the Supreme Court." "For the first time in the history of the… Continue Reading


02.24.16

Durbin Meets with Army Leadership Prior to Hearing on Army FY2017 Budget Request

[WASHINGTON, DC] - In advance of today's Senate Defense Appropriations Subcommittee hearing on the U.S. Army budget, Vice Chairman Dick Durbin (D-IL) met yesterday with Acting Army Secretary Patrick Murphy and the Chief of Staff of the Army, General Mark Milley. During the meeting, Acting Army Secretary Murphy, General Milley, and Durbin discussed the long-term future of Illinois' Army installations, including the Rock Island Arsenal. A photo of the meeting is available here. "Last year, t… Continue Reading


02.23.16

Durbin Calls for Accountability & Fairness as STB Considers New Passenger Rail On-Time-Performance Standards

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - As the Surface Transportation Board (STB) considers new rulemaking regarding passenger rail on-time performance standards, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) called on Board Chairman Dan Elliot to consider the impact of the rule on Amtrak's quality of service in Illinois and throughout the country. "While there needs to be a clear process of accountability for on-time performance, it is important to get it right," Durbin wrote to Elliot, calling attention to the role of freight… Continue Reading


02.23.16

Durbin: Bipartisan Legislation to Allow for Danville VA Land Swap Heads to President's Desk

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Veterans and students in Danville will soon benefit from a land transfer between the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Illiana Health Care System and Danville Area Community College (DACC), said U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today. Bipartisan legislation to allow the Illiana VA in Danville, Illinois to convey land to DACC was passed unanimously by the Senate yesterday evening and approved by the House of Representatives earlier this month. The bill - which was co-sponsor… Continue Reading


02.23.16

Durbin Statement on President's Plan to Close Guantanamo Bay Detention Facility

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement regarding President Obama's plan to close the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay: I have long supported our military and national security leaders in their calls to close Guantanamo. For almost a decade, the American people and my Senate colleagues have all known how to do this and why we should: it weakens our alliances, strengthens our enemies like ISIS and Al Qaeda, and casts doubt on our country's commitment … Continue Reading


02.23.16

Durbin: The Senate Needs to Do Its Job & President Obama's Supreme Court Nominee a Fair Hearing and a Timely Vote

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) spoke on the Senate Floor today to tell his Republican colleagues that "the Senate can't afford to sit on its hands for one year and leave the Supreme Court hanging in the balance." Durbin called attention to the practical and legal ramifications of leaving an extended vacancy on the Supreme Court, noting that, "Major legal and constitutional questions are constantly brought before the court. When the Court is frozen at an even number of… Continue Reading


02.22.16

Durbin: Health and Safety of Alexander County Public Housing Residents Should be Number One Priority

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Following an announcement by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) that it will be taking possession of the Alexander County Housing Authority, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today said that the health and safety of public housing residents must be the number one priority during the transition. "Though recent steps have been taken to address issues of mismanagement and misuse of funds within the Alexander County Housing Authority, HUD determined today … Continue Reading


02.19.16

Durbin: $118 Million in Funding for Illinois Will Help Revitalize Neighborhoods That Were Hit Hardest by Economic Crisis

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today praised the announcement by the U.S. Department of Treasury that the State of Illinois has been awarded $118,174,500 in funding to support efforts to revitalize neighborhoods that were hardest hit by the foreclosure crisis. Today's funding was awarded through Phase 1 of the Hardest Hit Fund for which Congress recently appropriated a total of $2 billion. Durbin is a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee and advocated for boostin… Continue Reading


02.19.16

Durbin Announces Nominees for Service Academies

SPRINGFIELD - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today released the names of young men and women whom he has nominated to attend four of the nation's service academies. "Every year I am honored to nominate some of Illinois' best and brightest young men and women for our nation's service academies," Durbin said. "These individuals are the leaders of tomorrow, and I have no doubt that they will make their families and their country proud." The academies include U.S. Military Academy at West Poi… Continue Reading


02.18.16

Durbin, Kirk, Rush, IDOT, City of Chicago Announce $1.25 Million in Federal Grant for Design of Grade Separation Project on 95th Street

[CHICAGO, IL] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Mark Kirk (R-IL), U.S. Representative Bobby Rush (D-IL), the Illinois Department of Transportation, and the City of Chicago today announced a $1.25 million federal railroad safety grant that will help cover the cost of design work for an important grade separation project on 95th Street in Chicago that is part of the CREATE Program. The grant from the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) is part of Safe Transportation of Energy Products (STEP… Continue Reading


02.18.16

Durbin Statement on U.S. - Japan Aviation Agreement

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today made the following statement after the U.S. Departments of Transportation and State announced a new aviation agreement with Japan regarding access at Tokyo International Airport (Haneda). Today, negotiators announced a proposal that provides for daytime service opportunities for U.S. and Japanese air carriers at Haneda, the busiest in Japan and the closest to downtown Tokyo. These flights may begin as early as Fall 2016. "This agre… Continue Reading


02.18.16

Durbin Statement on Possible National Historic Landmark Status for S.S. Badger

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today released the following statement after being assured by the Environmental Protection Agency that, a National Historic Landmark designation would not affect EPA's ability to implement any of its environmental regulations related to the S.S. Badger. Earlier today, the Department of the Interior announced the S.S. Badger would be designated a National Historic Landmark almost a year after the ship's owners completed the necessary steps to … Continue Reading


02.15.16

Durbin Statement on Supreme Court Vacancy

SPRINGFIELD-U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement regarding the vacancy on the United States Supreme Court caused by the passing of Justice Antonin Scalia: Justice Scalia was a person I came to know-he was very bright, funny, and social. We disagreed on a lot of things, but he gave more than three decades of his life to public service and left a real mark on the court. My thoughts and prayers go out to his family. Senate Republicans have made clear that th… Continue Reading


02.13.16

Durbin Statement on Passing of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia

SPRINGFIELD-U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement regarding the passing of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia: Justice Scalia served our country for three decades on its highest court. While our opinions on the law and jurisprudence were frequently at odds, he was steadfast and true to his beliefs during his tenure. My thoughts are with his family and loved ones at this time.… Continue Reading

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