Minority News Releases

04.11.19

Schumer And Leahy Introduce Bill To Provide Assistance To All Disaster-Impacted Areas, Including the Midwest, Southeast, And Puerto Rico

WASHINGTON (Thursday, April 11, 2019) - Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Thursday introduced a comprehensive, emergency disaster supplemental appropriations package that would provide relief to all American citizens from recent natural disasters. The package totals $17.2 billion and includes $3 billion in funding for disasters in the Midwest and Southeast. This amendment is a companion bill to the legislation i… Continue Reading


04.09.19

Senate Democratic Appropriations Chief Spokesman’s Comment On The Latest Republican Disaster Offer

"Over the weekend, Senate Republicans made an offer that did not provide a single cent in new funding to help the American citizens of Puerto Rico rebuild their communities. To call this a 'compromise offer' is not constructive at best. To say Senate Democrats are exacting 'pay back' for votes against Hurricane Sandy relief is a ludicrous effort to shift responsibility for this stalemate. The issue has been, and the issue remains, providing relief to ALL Americans suffering from recent natura… Continue Reading


04.04.19

Senate Republicans Block Comprehensive Disaster Relief For All American Communities For Second Time In A Week

WASHINGTON (Thursday, April 4, 2019) - Senate Republicans Thursday blocked a disaster assistance package that would address the needs of all American communities affected by recent natural disasters for the second time in a week. The move follows President Trump's campaign of holding aid to all American communities hostage over a petty, political grudge with the American citizens of Puerto Rico. Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) said: "I have always stood wit… Continue Reading


04.04.19

Vice Chairman Leahy Statement On The Disaster Supplemental Appropriations Bill

It is unfortunate that the Senate reached an impasse on the emergency disaster supplemental appropriations bills. For months, I repeatedly urged Senate Republican leadership to take up and pass the House bill, H.R. 268, and for nearly 3 months they did nothing. During those three months, American communities suffered, and new disasters struck the Midwest and Southeast. The new criticism from Republican leadership became that Democrats pushing for more comprehensive aid to Puerto Rico in H.R. … Continue Reading


04.03.19

ICYMI – Leahy, Schumer Introduce Path Forward On Disaster Bill, Will Push For Floor Action This Week

Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) Tuesday introduced an amendment that would provide $16.7 billion in disaster assistance, including $2.5 billion in new funding for communities in the Southeast and Midwest and restoring certain funding for Puerto Rico and other states and territories. Leahy and Schumer will push for the Senate to take up their amendment this week. Release announcing the amendment is available HERE: http… Continue Reading


04.02.19

Vice Chairman Leahy and Leader Schumer Introduce Path Forward For Disaster Supplemental – New Amendment Provides New Funding for Midwestern Disasters & Restores Certain Funding for Puerto Rico, Other Territories

WASHINGTON (TUESDAY, April 2, 2019) - Vice Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) Tuesday introduced a substitute to the emergency disaster supplemental to provide a path forward to resolving the current impasse on the disaster funding bill. The Leahy/Schumer amendment totals $16.7 billion and includes $2.5 billion in new funding for disaster stricken communities in the Southeast and Midwest and restores certain fundi… Continue Reading


04.01.19

Senate Republicans Reject Leahy Amendment To Provide Aid For 2019 Disasters

WASHINGTON (MONDAY, April 1, 2019) - Senate Republicans Monday rejected an amendment to the emergency disaster supplemental offered by Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Vice Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, to provide aid to communities affected by 2019 disasters. Leahy said: "It is disappointing that the Republicans rejected my amendment. As Americans and as Senators, we should stand with all American communities that are affected by disaster. We should not pick and choose who … Continue Reading


04.01.19

Statement Of Vice Chairman Leahy On The Disaster Emergency Supplemental

It is the responsibility of the federal government to stand with American communities in crisis. And I appreciate the efforts of Chairman Shelby and his staff to move this process forward. I know communities in the Chairman's state recently experienced their own natural disaster, and as Vice Chair of the Appropriations Committee, as a United States Senator, and as a Vermonter, I am ready to stand with the people of Alabama. Because that is what we as Americans do. When Tropical Storm … Continue Reading


03.27.19

Vice Chairman Leahy Introduces Compromise Path Forward On Emergency Disaster Supplemental

WASHINGTON (Wednesday, March 27, 2019) - Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Wednesday introduced a compromise path forward on the Emergency Disaster Supplemental that adequately addresses the needs of communities affected by recent natural disasters, including the American citizens of Puerto Rico and other territories. For more than two months, Senate Republicans - at the direction of President Trump - have refused to take up a comprehensive disaster relief pack… Continue Reading


03.27.19

Statement Of Vice Chairman Leahy On The Disaster Supplemental Appropriations Bill

On January 16th, over two months ago, the House passed a supplemental appropriations bill, H.R. 268, that addressed the needs of all communities impacted by disasters. The House-passed disaster bill provided assistance to help people impacted by Hurricanes Florence and Michael, the Hawaii volcanoes, and the California wildfires. It provided aid to the people of the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands and Guam who were struck last year by typhoons, and the people of American Samoa who… Continue Reading


03.27.19

Comment of Vice Chairman Leahy On Secretary Ross Declining To Testify Before The Senate Appropriations Subcommittee On Commerce, Justice and Science

[The Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, and Science on Tuesday announced an annual hearing to review the budget for the Department of Commerce. Giving no public explanation, Secretary Ross declined the Subcommittee's invitation to appear at the hearing, as Department Secretaries traditionally do. Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy on Wednesday commented:] "Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross was supposed to appear before a Senate Appropriations subcommitt… Continue Reading


03.26.19

Leahy, Schumer Blast Trump Administration For Abysmal Response To Puerto Rico Recovery And Demand Timeline For Correcting Its Uncoordinated, Long-Delayed Response

WASHINGTON (TUESDAY, March 26, 2019) - In a letter to Office of Management and Budget Director, and Acting Chief of Staff, Mick Mulvaney; Acting FEMA Administrator Peter Gaynor; and Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Ben Carson, Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) blasted the Trump administration for continuing to undermine the immediate and long-term recovery efforts in Puerto Rico, and de… Continue Reading


03.25.19

Vice Chairman Leahy Statement on Senator Udall Announcing He Will Not Run For Reelection

Tom Udall has been a steadfast partner on the Appropriations Committee, a workhorse senator, and a dear friend. In the key role of Ranking member of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on the Interior, he has worked with me as we fought together to turn back the devastating cuts to environmental programs proposed by the Trump Administration, to protect the Land and Water Conservation Fund, and to enhance cultural programs around the country. I'm confident that Senator Udall will spend the n… Continue Reading


03.25.19

House Appropriations Chairwoman Lowey and Senate Appropriations Vice Chairman Leahy Statement on the Emergency Supplemental

WASHINGTON - House Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Nita M. Lowey (D-NY-17) and Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick J. Leahy (D-VT) released the following statement on Senate Republicans' emergency supplemental appropriations bill for disaster relief and recovery: "House Democrats first passed a comprehensive, emergency disaster supplemental in January. We are disappointed Senate Republicans have refused to take up this bill for more than two months, leaving millions of Am… Continue Reading


03.12.19

LEAHY, DURBIN, SCHATZ, SENATORS DEMAND ANSWERS FROM DOD ON ITS PLANS TO DEFUND MILITARY PROJECTS TO PAY FOR TRUMP WALL

WASHINGTON - Today, U.S. Senators Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Vice Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Vice Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense, and Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), Ranking Member on the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Military Construction and Veterans Affairs, led a group of Democratic appropriators calling on the Department of Defense to provide Congress with a list of military projects it intends to defund to pay for Pres… Continue Reading


03.11.19

Statement Of Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) On President Trump’s Budget Proposal

For the third year in a row, President Trump has sent a budget proposal that is dead on arrival and divorced from reality. It is not worth the paper it is printed on, and it will be rejected by Congress. Yet again, the President has proposed shortsighted cuts that would slash investments in infrastructure, medical research, and American families, cuts that have been rejected by Congress two fiscal years in a row. But now he relies on a budget gimmick, Overseas Contingency Operations funding … Continue Reading


02.28.19

Statement Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) On The Need To Reach A New Two-Year Budget Agreement

While it was only two short weeks ago that we finished the Fiscal Year 2019 Appropriations bills, there is no rest for the weary on the Senate Appropriations Committee. I come to the Floor today to talk about the need to reach a new two-year budget deal so that the Appropriations Committee can begin its work in earnest on the Fiscal Year 2020 bills. Unless we get a budget deal, sequestration returns in Fiscal Year 2020, necessitating steep cuts in programs that invest in America and support … Continue Reading


02.26.19

Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) On President’s Trump Declaration of a National Emergency

When President Trump declared a national emergency two weeks ago in order to build his pet project - and in the process declared his intent to siphon billions of dollars that Congress had appropriated for our men and women in uniform- I am not sure which lawyers he consulted, but those lawyers seemed to overlook our nation's founding document, the United States Constitution. I know the President likes to communicate in 280 characters or less, so I'll point him to a 77 character phrase he may wa… Continue Reading


02.15.19

Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy On President Trump’s Declaration Of A National Emergency

There is no national emergency. No one who subscribes to reality can claim otherwise. Crossings are historically down, billions are being spent on border security, and Congress yesterday appropriated still more. President Trump simply failed to get a deal to build his wasteful vanity wall. He failed to get a deal with Mexico, despite promising his supporters more than 200 times that Mexico would pay for it. He failed to get a deal with his own party, even during the two years when Republica… Continue Reading


02.14.19

Statement Of Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) On The Seven-Bill Appropriations Conference Report

This week, Republicans and Democrats from the House and Senate came together, ignoring the distractions and tweetstorms coming from the White House, and reached an agreement to fund our government and make responsible investments in the American people. This is not the agreement I would have reached on my own. There are things in this bill that I support, and things that I disagree with, but that is the nature of a negotiation. Everyone had to give something to reach a bipartisan compromise. … Continue Reading

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