Press Releases


Whitehouse, Langevin, Cicilline Call for Swift Enactment of Consumer Protections from Ever-Shrinking Airplane Seats

Warwick, RI - At the height of the busy summer travel season, U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, Congressman Jim Langevin, and Congressman David N. Cicilline today called on the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to make air travel safer and more comfortable for passengers by setting a reasonable minimum size and pitch for airplane seats. The members of Rhode Island's congressional delegation joined with airport officials to make the announcement at T.F. Green Airport in Warwick. Whitehouse a… Continue Reading


Whitehouse, Cassidy, Hassan Raise Red Flag on Latest Scam Targeting Seniors

U.S. Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Bill Cassidy, M.D. (R-LA), and Maggie Hassan (D-NH) have called on Attorney General Barr and Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar to protect seniors being targeted by the latest scam on Medicare recipients. There have been recent reports that criminals are targeting seniors by offering genetic testing they claim is covered by Medicare. "…scammers are deceiving Medicare beneficiaries and inducing them to receive genetic test screenings cov… Continue Reading


Senators Call Out Partisan ‘Project’ to Tip Supreme Court in Favor of NRA-Backed Plaintiffs

Whitehouse, Hirono, Blumenthal, Durbin, Gillibrand warn of long-term damage to the Supreme Court’s reputation in delivering for special interests despite longstanding judicial principle

Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Mazie Hirono (D-HI), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Dick Durbin (D-IL), and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) filed a brief with the U.S. Supreme Court today in a case bringing the first major challenge to gun safety laws since 2010. Against the backdrop of shocking gun violence in America, the senators detail how the National Rifle Association (NRA), the Federalist Society, and other dark money-funded partisan groups have engineered the case before the Court, and engin… 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: Who Funds The Chamber?

As prepared for delivery

Mr./Madam President, before I begin my 251st Time to Wake up remarks, I would like to thank two AAAS fellows who will be leaving my office. Dr. Kim Binsted came to us from the University of Hawaii, where was the principal investigator on the NASA-sponsored Hi-Seas project, studying conditions like those astronauts would encounter on Mars. Next month, she returns to Hawaii to continue her research. Dr. Ryan Edwards joined us after completing his PhD at Princeton University, where he studied c… Continue Reading


Time to Wake Up 250: Looking Back – and Forward

As prepared for delivery

Mr./Madam President, for the 250th week in a row of Senate session, I rise - yet again - to call this chamber to wake up to the threat of climate change. In April 2012, I delivered the first of these speeches; I began: "I know that many in Washington would prefer to ignore this issue, but nature keeps sending us messages - messages we ignore at our peril." It was a cry of frustration - frustration that the Supreme Court's infamous Citizens United decision had killed bipartisan work on climate… Continue Reading


Time to Wake Up: Banking on Climate Change

As prepared for delivery

Mr./Madam President, for a long time people opposed to climate action said that tackling climate change would be too costly, would harm economic growth, would be bad for American businesses, and would kill jobs. These were phony arguments, peddled by fossil fuel interests. And they're flat wrong. Actually, the economic hazard is not action, but inaction. [Chart 1: Economic warning organizations] We've recently seen an explosion of warnings from economic regulators, central banks, insurers,… Continue Reading

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'Knick'-Picking: Why a Recent SCOTUS Ruling Signals a New Day

'Knick'-Picking: Why a Recent SCOTUS Ruling Signals a New Day

For years, back to when I argued the U.S. Supreme Court case Palazzolo v. Rhode Island as Rhode Island's attorney general, big-money developers and regulated industries and the lawyer groups that front for them have been trying to turn the Constitution's takings clause into a weapon against the government. The court's decision in Knick v. Township of Scott just gave them a big prize-and showed how much control those interests now have. At first glance, the facts in Knick are unremarkable: a par… Continue Reading


Saving the oceans — one place where Congress can agree

Republican Francis Rooney is a member of Congress representing Florida's 19th District. He is a co-chair of the Climate Solutions Caucus and is also a member of the Oceans Caucus. Democrat Sheldon Whitehouse is a U.S. Senator serving Rhode Island. He is a senior member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee and a Co-Chair of the Senate Oceans Caucus.

Human beings have not always been good stewards of our oceans. We have overexploited their natural gifts, polluted their waves with garbage, acidified them with carbon dioxide, and threatened their shores with offshore drilling. Thankfully, there is bipartisan support in Washington to take action. We come from different regions, backgrounds, and political parties. Yet we are united by our passion for keeping our coasts and oceans healthy. In New England, our fishing heritage has long been tied… Continue Reading


The Green New Deal vote shows Republicans would rather mock climate change than challenge big lobbying groups

If corporations are serious about climate change, they must take a hard look at groups that represent them while opposing all legislation.

We are from opposite coasts, serve on opposite sides of the Capitol and one of us is in the majority party while the other is in the minority, but we share one thing as members of Congress: The political experience of having a relentless adversary, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, to any and all meaningful legislative solutions on climate change. We also share the experience of working with our local chambers of commerce, which represent the business community in our home states in positive, honor… Continue Reading

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