Press Releases


Senators File Formal Comment on EPA Science Rule

‘The proposed rule is just the latest item on industry’s wish list’

Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Brian Schatz (D-HI), Tom Carper (D-DE), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Edward J. Markey (D-MA), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), Kamala Harris (D-CA), and Maggie Hassan (D-NH) have submitted a comment to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on the agency's proposal to exclude important scientific studies from its rulemaking process. The rule would cast aside unbiased, rigorous, peer-reviewed research critical to informing decisions affecting Amer… Continue Reading


Whitehouse Calls on Kavanaugh Dark Money Campaign to Disclose Donors

Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, pressed a trio of secretive conservative groups for information on who is backing their multi-million-dollar campaign to select and confirm Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court. Whitehouse's letters to the Heritage Foundation, the Judicial Crisis Network, and the Federalist Society raise a number of questions about their fundraising practices and anonymous donors, including whether they have received large donations … Continue Reading


Providence Fire Department Nets Nearly $1M Federal Grant

In an effort to help the Providence Fire Department enhance training and safety, U.S. Senators Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse and Congressmen Jim Langevin and David Cicilline today joined with Providence Public Safety Commissioner Steven Paré to announce $993,309 in federal funding for the Providence Fire Department through the Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) Program. The Department will use the funding to provide additional training… Continue Reading

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In the News


Comey Violated Important Principle by Disclosing Emails Investigation to Congress

As a former attorney general of my state, and a former United States attorney, it is perplexing for me to try to understand FBI Director James Comey's conduct in the agency's investigation of emails related to Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton. We prosecutors lived by principles that he seems to have violated: Don't discuss investigations, whether or not they are ongoing. Don't volunteer evidence you haven't charged. And don't engage with legislators. I had a hard-and-fast rule … Continue Reading


Why Republicans Continue to Deny Climate Science

Republicans in Congress and on the campaign trail are digging themselves into quite a hole. Climate change is both a critical issue for our world's security and sustainability, and a key political issue that could help decide who wins the White House in 2016. And yet Republicans continue to deny climate science, dismiss the urgency of action, or exaggerate the costs of the President's plans to address it. To read the full article, click here.… Continue Reading


The Many Sins of ‘Citizens United’

Our politics is awash in cash. Super PACs supporting presidential candidates have banked more than $250 million through June 30-nearly 10 times more than at this point in the 2012 cycle. "Dark money" from anonymous donors is also surging (dark to us, of course; you can bet the candidates know). The political network of Charles and David Koch has said that it plans to spend as much as $900 million in the 2016 election cycle, raised mostly from undisclosed donors. "For that kind of money, you cou… Continue Reading

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Time to Wake Up: Crash Conditions

Mr. President, I spoke before the Fourth of July recess about two financial risks that are coming our way thanks to not getting anything done on climate change. One, of course, is the risk to coastal properties--not something the Presiding Officer has to worry too much about given his home State but something that Rhode Island, the Ocean State, has to care a lot about and that the distinguished Senator from Florida and his constituents have to care a lot about. There is a point where rising se… Continue Reading


Whitehouse Floor Remarks on Benczkowski

Mr. President, this past year and half of the Trump administration has been a constant, daily barrage of scandal, corruption, and chaotic incompetence. In this environment, the Senate now considers the President's controversial nomination of Brian Benczkowski to lead the Criminal Division of the U.S. Department of Justice. It has been over a year since Benczkowski was first nominated, and there have been repeated calls for his nomination to be withdrawn. Why this man, for this job, at this time… Continue Reading


Time to Wake Up: DISCLOSE

Mr. President, as 2010 dawned, in what now seems like another era of political time, the U.S. Congress was poised to tackle the problem of climate change. The House of Representatives had just passed a cap-and-trade bill, and there was bipartisan support for climate action in the Senate. Then, on January 21--a date that ought to live in judicial infamy--five Justices on the U.S. Supreme Court--all Republican appointees--delivered Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission and unleashed unlim… Continue Reading

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Bipartisan bill addresses opioid concerns

Every 25 minutes, a baby is born suffering from withdrawal because the mother is grappling with addiction. These children are heartbreaking victims of an opioid crisis that has taken brutal hold of communities across the country. Rhode Island hospitals, like Women & Infants in Providence, saw the number of babies born into opioid withdrawal nearly triple between 2006 and 2015. That's why one of the key provisions of my new bill to address this public health crisis would increase support for… Continue Reading


In his final months in office, President Ronald Reagan spoke out about the dangers to American democracy of partisan gerrymandering, calling it on one occasion "a great conflict of interest to ask men holding office, elected from districts, to change the lines of that district to fit the new population changes." Today, nearly 30 years later, it's looking increasingly like this is the year the Supreme Court will finally rein in a gerrymandering practice that undermines a fundamental principle … Continue Reading


The peculiarities of the US financial system make it ideal for money laundering

The lifeblood of criminal enterprises all over the world is revenue. Money fuels terrorists, transnational criminal organizations, and crooked kleptocrats. These criminals need to launder their ill-gotten gains. Although this dirty money often comes from the most corrupt, unstable countries in the world, it often ends up-ironically-in the United States. Why? Partly because we have the most stable financial system in the world, and these malefactors seek rule-of-law protection for their ill-gott… Continue Reading

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