Press Releases

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03.14.14

Durbin to CIA: Respect Separation of Powers and Declassify Torture Report

Washington, D.C. - In a strongly worded letter to CIA Director John Brennan, Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today called on the CIA to support declassifying a report on its controversial detention and interrogation program. Durbin's letter follows the highly questionable and possibly unconstitutional search of Senate Select Committee on Intelligence computers by the CIA which was revealed this week. "I write to express my grave concerns about the CIA's actions with respect to t… Continue Reading


02.25.14

Durbin: Time to End Use of Solitary Confinement for Juveniles, Pregnant Women, and those with Serious Mental Illness

Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) called for an end to the use of solitary confinement for juveniles, pregnant women and those with serious and persistent mental illness during a hearing before the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights. Durbin, who chaired the hearing, urged further reform of the controversial detention practice so the United States can protect human rights, improve public safety, and be more fiscally responsible. "Thirty… Continue Reading


02.18.14

Durbin, Kelly Ask U.S. Attorney Fardon to Explain Federal Role in Harvey

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Representative Robin Kelly (D-IL) today called on U.S. Attorney Zachary Fardon to explain the federal government's role in Harvey, Illinois particularly as it relates to combating violent crime which has gone largely unpunished in the suburban Chicago town. Their letter follows a series of Chicago Tribune articles concerning violent crime in Harvey and questionable conduct in Harvey by local law enforcement, local government, and fed… Continue Reading


02.06.14

Durbin: Senate Judiciary Committee Approves Federal Judicial Nominee in Southern District of Illinois

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that the Senate Judiciary Committee, of which he is a member, has unanimously approved Nancy Rosenstengel for a federal judgeship on the U.S. District Court in the Southern District of Illinois. Her nomination will now proceed to a vote by the full Senate. "Nancy Rosenstengel will make an exceptional judge in the Southern District. Her nomination is an historic one. Upon confirmation, Ms. Rosenstengel will be the first wo… Continue Reading


02.05.14

Durbin: New Exemptions Will Allow More Syrian Refugees to Enter U.S.

Washington, D.C. - Almost one month to the day after Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) asked the Obama administration to take steps to address the ongoing Syrian refugee crisis, the Administration announced a series of exemptions to the overly-broad "material support" bar in U.S. immigration law. These exemptions will help ensure that innocent refugees will not be barred from the United States because they provided insignificant support to armed rebel groups. "These exemptions will help address the … Continue Reading


01.28.14

Durbin Statement on President Obama's State of the Union Address

Washington, D.C. - Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement today following President Obama's State of the Union address: "Tonight the President gave an optimistic speech about opportunity for American families, an economy on the rise and leveled a call to action to ensure this is a year of progress for the middle class." "From programs to grow the economy and create jobs like the launching of new manufacturing institutes and infrastructure investment… Continue Reading


01.13.14

Durbin, Bustos: Robust Funding for Prison Activation in Omnibus Appropriations Bill Is Good News for Thomson

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Representative Cheri Bustos (IL-17) today announced that the Omnibus Appropriations bill for Fiscal Year 2014, which was filed in the House and Senate earlier today, includes funding for the activation of the Thomson correctional facility in Thomson, Illinois. The bill, which reflects a budget agreement between the House and Senate must now be voted on in both chambers and signed into law by President Obama. Though today's bill … Continue Reading


01.10.14

Durbin, Brown, and Kirk Introduce Bipartisan Resolution to Honor Famed Prohibition Agent Eliot Ness

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, U.S. Sens. Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Mark Kirk (R-IL) and Dick Durbin (D-IL) introduced a bipartisan resolution to honor Ohio resident and Illinois native Eliot Ness, the legendary law enforcement agent who fought to bring Chicago mob boss Al Capone to justice. The senators' resolution would name the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (BATFE) headquarters in Washington D.C., the Eliot Ness ATF Building. "Chicago gangster Al Capone believed th… Continue Reading


01.08.14

Durbin Introduces Southern District Judicial Nominee at Senate Committee Hearing

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today introduced Nancy Rosenstengel at a hearing of the Senate Judiciary Committee, of which he is a member, to consider her nomination to fill a vacancy on the U.S. District Court in the Southern District of Illinois. Her nomination is expected to receive a vote in the committee within the next few weeks. If approved, her nomination will receive a vote by the full Senate. Durbin also met with Ms. Rosentengal following today's confirmation hea… Continue Reading


01.07.14

Durbin Holds Hearing on Syrian Refugee Crisis

Washington, D.C. - Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL), chairman of the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights, held a hearing today on the ongoing Syrian refugee crisis. "The ongoing civil war in Syria has created the world's worst humanitarian and refugee crisis since the Rwandan genocide and perhaps since World War II," Durbin said. "Of the nearly 2.3 million Syrian refugees that have fled the bloody civil war, nearly half are children. W… Continue Reading


12.19.13

Durbin, Bustos Applaud New Task Force to Fight Violent Crime in Winnebago County

[WASHINGTON, DC] - Following today's announcement of the formation of the Winnebago County Violent Crime Task Force, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Representative Cheri Bustos (D-IL) commended local law enforcement leaders for coordinating their efforts to address violent crime in the Winnebago County area. The new partnership is an outgrowth of a meeting Durbin and Bustos convened with law enforcement leaders in Rockford earlier this year to discuss strategies for coordinating crime f… Continue Reading


11.07.13

With Illinois Poised to Become the 15th State Legalizing Gay Marriage, Durbin Heralds Senate Passage of Bipartisan Legislation to End LGBT Discrimination in the Workplace

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Prior to Senate passage of the bipartisan Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) spoke at a press conference in support of the measure, which is the most important gay-rights legislation to come before the Senate since the repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell. In his remarks, Durbin praised his colleague U.S. Senator Mark Kirk (R-IL), who has supported ENDA since he was first elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2001. The legislation … Continue Reading


11.07.13

Durbin: White House Nominates Rosenstengel to Fill Federal Judicial Vacancy in Southern District

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that President Obama has nominated Nancy J. Rosenstengel to fill an upcoming vacancy on the U.S. District Court in the Southern District of Illinois. "Nancy Rosenstengel is an excellent candidate for a federal judgeship in Illinois," said Durbin. "Throughout her legal career, she has gained a wealth of experience and knowledge which, once approved, will serve her well as the first female district court judge to serve in … Continue Reading


11.06.13

Durbin Discusses Thomson Prison at Senate Oversight Hearing

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - At a hearing of the Senate Judiciary Committee examining the Federal Bureau of Prisons, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today discussed the important job creation that Thomson prison will bring to both Illinois and Iowa. "The opening of Thomson prison is going to create good paying jobs for people living in Iowa and my home state of Illinois," said Durbin. "It is going to lessen the overcrowding in the prison system and provide critical beds that are necessary for the … Continue Reading


11.05.13

Durbin Introduces Kirk & Duckworth at Senate Committee Hearing on Disability Rights Treaty

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today introduced two members of the Illinois Congressional Delegation - U.S. Senator Mark Kirk (R-IL) and U.S. Representative Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) - prior to their testimony before a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). Today, both Kirk - who suffered a life-threatening ischemic stroke last year - and Duckworth - who was injured while serving in the Illinois Army … Continue Reading


10.29.13

Durbin: It Is Time for Stand Your Ground Laws To Be Carefully Reconsidered

Washington, D.C. - Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee's Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights, called for state "stand your ground" laws to be carefully reconsidered following recent and high profile shootings of unarmed young people. These laws, one of which played a key role in the trial surrounding the shooting death of Florida teenager Trayvon Martin, give individuals legal permission to use lethal force to prot… Continue Reading


10.16.13

Senate Confirms Zachary Fardon as New U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) released the following statements today after the Senate confirmed Zachary Fardon to be the next U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois. The Senate unanimously approved his nomination. "Zachary Fardon will be an exceptional U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois," Durbin said. "His range of experience will serve him well in a city and region as diverse and challenging as the Northern District. … Continue Reading


10.07.13

Durbin: Senate Approves Federal Judicial Nominees in Northern & Central Districts of Illinois

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that the Senate has unanimously approved Sara Ellis for a federal judgeship on the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois and Colin Bruce for a federal judgeship on the U.S. District Court for the Central District of Illinois. "Both Sara Ellis and Colin Bruce have the experience, qualifications, and integrity to be excellent federal judges," said Durbin. "I was proud to recommend them both to President … Continue Reading


09.27.13

Durbin, Bustos Announce Nearly $1.4 Million in Funding for Peoria and Rockford Law Enforcement

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Representative Cheri Bustos (D-IL) announced today that the Department of Justice Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) program has awarded the City of Rockford $625,000 in funding to hire or rehire five police officers and the City of Peoria $750,000 in funding to recruit or rehire six police officers. Today's funding is part of a nationwide announcement of $125 million in COPS grants that will be given to 263 different… Continue Reading


09.05.13

Durbin, Bustos Brief Community Members on Progess of Thomson Prison's Activation

[THOMSON, IL] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Representative Cheri Bustos (D-IL-17) met today with local community leaders to brief them on the progress and next steps in the activation of Thomson Prison, which the federal government purchased from the State of Illinois at Durbin's urging last year. The two were accompanied at today's meeting by Bill Dalius, the Assistant Director for Administration of the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP), who oversees facility and budget development … Continue Reading

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