Majority News Releases


Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy Statement On The Final Rescission Proposal From President Trump

For the last four years, President Trump has repeatedly displayed his inability to grasp that a government by the people works for the people. His budgets proposed to undermine our government's ability to help families in need and invest in future growth. Congress turned back each of these irresponsible budgets on a bipartisan basis. Apparently President Trump remains unable to understand the potential consequences of his failed policies. The $27 billion of rescission proposals he submitted… Continue Reading


Leahy Statement On President Elect Biden's Proposal To Address The COVID Crisis And Restart The Economy

I am relieved that we will finally have a partner in the White House who takes this unprecedented health and economic crisis seriously. There are pressing needs that have been unaddressed for far too long as hundreds of thousands died, tens of millions were infected, and millions lost their jobs. To restart the economy we must defeat the virus, and I am glad to see the bold action this crisis deserves proposed by President Elect Biden. I look forward to working with the incoming President… Continue Reading


Leahy Statement On The Law Enforcement Response To Wednesday's Tragic Events

Yesterday, the very heart of our democracy was laid under siege. I am grateful to the men and women in law enforcement who defended the people's house from this violent and lawless mob. However, there were clearly systematic failures, and this breach should have never happened. There are many questions we must answer. In the coming days the Appropriations Committee will be investigating yesterday's tragic events. # # # # #… Continue Reading


Statement of Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy on the FY 2021 Omnibus Appropriations Bills and COVID Relief Package

After months of delay and painstaking negotiation, this afternoon we will have before us a spending package that includes all 12 appropriations bills for fiscal year 2021, and a vitally important COVID relief package. It provides funding for programs that are critically important to the American people, and I urge its swift passage. We are already 2 months and 20 days into the fiscal year. We cannot delay further. As Vice Chairman of the Appropriations Committee, I worked hard to reach agree… Continue Reading


Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Releases Fiscal Year 2021 Omnibus Appropriations Bill

WASHINGTON (Monday, Dec. 21, 2020) - Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Monday released the $1.4 trillion fiscal year 2021 Omnibus Appropriations bill. Leahy said: "This agreement is the product of weeks of hard work and compromise. This is not the bill I would have written on my own. It includes things I support and things I oppose. But on balance, passage of this bill is unquestionably in the interest of the American people, and both the House and the Senat… Continue Reading


Vice Chairman Leahy Statement On House Passage Of The Continuing Resolution

I am glad that the House passed a one week continuing resolution that will allow us the time we need to complete our work on full year appropriations bills, and I urge the Senate to take up and pass it as soon as possible. We cannot - and will not - allow government funding to lapse in the midst of an unprecedented health and economic crisis. Chairwoman Lowey, Ranking Member Granger, Chairman Shelby, myself, and our staff, have been tirelessly working through the nights and the weekend to reac… Continue Reading


Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) On The Urgent Need For COVID Relief

It's been 321 days since the first COVID-19 case was reported in the United States. It's been 282 days since the first COVID-19 death was reported in the United States. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the unemployment rate in November was 6.7 percent, nearly double the rate in November of last year. Hundreds of thousands of small businesses across the country have closed, permanently, due to COVID. As of today, there are more than 14.8 million reported cases of COVID-19 in the Un… Continue Reading


Senate Approps Vice Chair Leahy Statement On The Release Of The FY 2021 Senate Appropriations Bills

Today, Chairman Shelby released draft bills and explanatory statements for each of the twelve FY 2021 appropriations bills. Chairman Shelby and I agree on the importance of completing our work on the twelve bills before the continuing resolution expires on December 11. I am very disappointed that the majority chose to cancel Committee mark ups of the FY 2021 bills and that the bills were not considered by the full Senate, eliminating the ability of members to offer amendments. This is an imp… Continue Reading


Senate Approps. Vice Chairman Leahy On The FY 2021 CR

Today the Senate will vote on a continuing resolution to keep the government funded through December 11, 2020. I strongly urge all members to vote aye. The last thing our country needs is a government shutdown in the middle of a global pandemic and an unprecedented economic crisis. The bill we are considering passed the House by a wide margin, a rarity these days in Washington. It provides funding for the government through December 11 at fiscal year 2020 funding levels and under the same te… Continue Reading


Senate Approps. Vice Chairman Leahy Statement On The Motion To Proceed To The Continuing Resolution

In a few moments we will vote on the motion to proceed to H.R. 8337, the Continuing Appropriations Act, 2021 and other Extensions Act of 2020. I urge all members to vote aye. This bill provides funding for the government through December 11 at fiscal year 2020 funding levels and under the same terms and conditions contained in the fiscal year 2020 appropriations laws. It also includes several authorization matters to extend programs that otherwise would expire, including important health and… Continue Reading


Statement of Appropriations Vice Chairman Leahy On The Continuing Resolution

I am glad that the House introduced a continuing resolution today. I strongly urge Republicans and Democrats in both the House and Senate to take it up and pass it as soon as possible. The last thing our country needs is a government shutdown in the middle of a global pandemic and an unprecedented economic crisis. But make no mistake, the urgent need for this continuing resolution is a symptom of a dysfunctional Congress. It's a senseless and entirely avoidable made-in-Washington crisis. Th… Continue Reading


Senate Approps. Vice Chair Leahy On Need For COVID Relief Bill

We are in the middle of a public health crisis, and the American people are hurting. Nearly 190,000 people have died. Millions have lost their jobs and are struggling to make ends meet. People are being evicted from their homes and struggling to feed their families. And the virus is still not under control. The need for another emergency funding bill to address the COVID crisis is clear. Yet four weeks ago, the Trump administration and Senate Republican Leadership walked away from the neg… Continue Reading


Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy Announces Cancellation Of USCIS Furloughs

WASHINGTON (TUESDAY, August 25, 2020) - After repeatedly pressing the Trump Administration, Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) announced the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Tuesday cancelled its scheduled furlough of more than 13,000 dedicated, public servants. The furlough was set to take effect on August 30. Leahy said: "It is welcome news that these women and men will be able to continue to assist the thousands of United States Citizens, em… Continue Reading


REAX Of Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) To President Trump’s Coronavirus Executive Orders

The President wants to reopen schools, but opposes funding for schools to make them safe. The President thinks the virus will just disappear, but opposes funding for testing and tracing. The President promises that vaccines will be available by November, but opposes funding for vaccine development, distribution, and to make the vaccine affordable to everyone. The President says that the virus "is what it is," but he opposes funding for hospitals and other health care providers to support the … Continue Reading


Vice Chairman Leahy On The Republican COVID-19 Proposal And The Cost Of Continued Inaction

It was 75 days ago today, the Democratic-led House passed the HEROES Act -- a comprehensive and bold bill to address the very real needs facing this country as we struggle to contain the coronavirus. For 75 days, Democrats have pressed Republican leadership to take up the HEROES Act in the Senate, and for 75 days we have been told no. For 75 days we watched the virus spread and the death toll rise as President Trump stood by denying the severity of the crisis, attacking the science, and assur… Continue Reading


REAX Of Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy To The Inadequate McConnell/Trump COVID-19 Proposal

Since Democrats united around the Heroes Act, and it passed the House on May 15, President Trump and Republican Leadership opted for a "wait-and-see" approach, because they did not feel a "sense of urgency." Well they waited, and the American people have seen the results of their delay. In that time, confirmed cases in the United States have more than doubled and 56,000 more Americans are now dead. It is now clear that over the last 73 days while thousands more became infected and died, an… Continue Reading


Leahy Announces That USCIS Is Postponing Furloughs Of 13,000 Public Servants

(FRIDAY, July 24, 2019) - Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Friday announced the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) agreed to postpone its scheduled furlough of more than 13,000 public servants through Aug. 31. The action affects 1,109 Vermonters who earlier had received furlough notices effective Aug. 3. The announcement came after Leahy pressed the organization to reverse course on its intended furloughs after he made public the fact that new … Continue Reading


With A Projected USCIS Surplus, Leahy & Tester Call On The Agency To Postpone Its Planned Furloughs

WASHINGTON (TUESDAY, July 21, 2020) - Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Appropriations Subcommittee on Homeland Security Ranking Member Jon Tester (D-Mont.) Tuesday called on Department of Homeland Security Acting Secretary Chad Wolf and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Deputy Director For Policy Joseph Edlow to postpone plans to furlough 13,000 USCIS employees after revised revenue estimates show the agency will end the fiscal year with a s… Continue Reading


Leahy, Durbin, Murray And Tester Call On President Trump To Increase PPE And Testing Capacity

WASHINGTON (TUESDAY, July 21, 2020) - Senators Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Patty Murray (D-Wash.) and Jon Tester (D-Mont.) Tuesday released a letter calling on president Trump to utilize resources already passed by Congress and signed into law to increase production of personal, protective equipment (PPE) and testing capacity. Leahy is Vice Chair of the Appropriations Committee and Durbin, Murray and Tester also are leading Democratic members of the panel. In a letter to Presid… Continue Reading


The Mounting Cost Of COVID Inaction: Foreign Aid

COVID-19 On July 17, 2020 U.S. Infections - 3,483,832 | U.S. Deaths - 136,938 U.S. Unemployment - 11.1 Percent | Since House Passed Heroes Act - 63 Days How Much Does The United States Spend On Foreign Aid? Contrary to popular belief, foreign aid makes up less than 1percent of the federal budget. Among other things, these funds support humanitarian disaster relief, global health, economic development, and programs that protect American security interests abroad. Global COVID Fact On Jul… Continue Reading

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