Press Releases


RI Delegation Announces $7.4 Million in Homeland Security Grants for RI

WASHINGTON, DC - Rhode Island's Congressional delegation today announced that the state is scheduled to receive $7,380,473 in federal funding to help emergency responders and their partners prepare for and react to a range of crises and security challenges - including natural disasters. U.S. Senators Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse and U.S. Representatives Jim Langevin and David Cicilline today announced that the state will receive the federal national preparedness funds, which are awarded by … Continue Reading


Reed, Whitehouse Join Bipartisan Group Of Senators Urging Trump Administration To Combat Anti-Semitism, Appoint Special Envoy

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Jack Reed (D-R.I.) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) have joined Senators Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) and Rob Portman (R-Ohio) and a bipartisan group of 39 U.S. Senators urging President Donald Trump to appoint a Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism at the U.S. Department of State, a position that has now remained vacant for over 15 months. In a letter to President Trump, the senators emphasized the importance of the United States leading with action to … Continue Reading


Whitehouse Marks National Police Week with Salute to RI Law Enforcement

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse today marked National Police Week with the following statement honoring the contributions of Rhode Island's law enforcement community, which will appear in the Congressional record: "National Police Week pays special honor to the law enforcement officers who have lost their lives in the line of duty for the safety and protection of our citizens and communities. I am proud to cosponsor the resolution designating National Police Week as we recog… Continue Reading


Senator Whitehouse Commemorates Heroism of Hmong and Lao Soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery

Washington, DC - Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) honored Lao- and Hmong-American veterans who aided the United States during the Vietnam War at a wreath-laying ceremony before Arlington Cemetery's Lao Veterans Monument today. In remarks, Whitehouse offered a remembrance of the heroism of Hmong and Lao soldiers during the Vietnam War, which claimed tens of thousands of lives in Laos. Whitehouse was joined by several Lao and Hmong veterans and their families, including a large contingent from … Continue Reading


EPW Democrats Request Pruitt Appear before Committee on Ethics and Travel Issues

Washington, DC - Following months of reports of ethical and managerial lapses at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), six members of the Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee released a letter they sent to EPW Chairman John Barrasso (R-WY) calling for EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt to testify before the committee. Pruitt testified recently that profligate spending on luxury travel abroad and to his hometown, pay raises for top Pruitt aides, absenteeism among senior staff, an… Continue Reading


Twenty Senators Urge Extension of Comment Period on Pruitt Rule to Favor Industry-Backed Science

Washington, DC - Twenty Senators are asking Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Scott Pruitt to extend the deadline for weighing in on a proposed rule that would dramatically shrink the body of scientific knowledge the EPA can use in crafting public health and environmental protections. Pruitt's proposal would apply new "transparency" standards to block medical studies, clinical reports, and other rigorous, peer-reviewed scientific research based on health-related data that cann… Continue Reading


Inspector General Contradicts Pruitt Testimony about Threats

Washington, DC - In a letter sent to Senators Tom Carper (D-DE) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) today, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Inspector General called into question EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt's testimony during two House hearings on April 26 that threats against him have been "unprecedented in terms of quantity and type." Carper and Whitehouse had written to the Inspector General on May 2 asking for an explanation for whether the EPA's internal watchdog has formally signed … Continue Reading


Whitehouse Bestows Bronze Star on Vietnam Hero

Washington, DC - Today, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse conferred a Bronze Star Medal with Combat "V" device upon William Balzano of Charlestown for his actions in Vietnam as a member of the United States Marine Corps. The ceremony took place in the Ballroom at the Providence G before dozens of Balzano's family, friends, and fellow servicemembers. "I am honored to bestow this long-overdue honor on Lance Corporal Balzano," said Whitehouse. "His actions in Vietnam are a study in bravery and selflessn… Continue Reading


Whitehouse Statement on Trump Decision to Withdraw from Iran Nuclear Deal

Washington, DC - Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) released the following statement on President Donald Trump's decision to back out of the Iran nuclear deal: "This is a reckless - and, it appears, reflexive - decision. The President's refusal to waive sanctions puts the United States in violation of the nuclear agreement, moves the United States away from our allies, and reopens a path for Iran to obtain the nuclear arms it seeks. It also undermines our efforts to build international pressur… Continue Reading


Whitehouse-Portman Behavioral Health IT Bill Clears Senate

Washington, DC - The Senate has passed the bipartisan Improving Access to Behavioral Health Information Technology Act to help behavioral health care providers - like psychologists and psychiatric hospitals - adopt electronic health records. The bill was introduced in August by Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and Rob Portman (R-OH), and is cosponsored by Senators Bill Cassidy (R-LA) and Debbie Stabenow (D-MI). The legislation would authorize the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to… Continue Reading


Whitehouse Thanks Local Veterans at 11th Annual Breakfast

Pawtucket, RI - More than two hundred military veterans and their family members from across Rhode Island this morning sat down with U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse for conversation over eggs and bacon at his eleventh annual veterans breakfast and resource fair. The event was held at the Portuguese Social Club in Pawtucket. "I look forward to hosting this breakfast and resource fair for veterans and their families every year," said Whitehouse. "It's a small gesture to express gratitude to the… Continue Reading


Carper, Whitehouse Sound Alarm about Thousands of Pages of Unreleased Communications between Pruitt and Special Interests

Washington, DC - In a letter sent to Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt and federal ethics officials today, Senators Tom Carper (D-DE) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) called attention to at least 3,100 pages of unreleased communications between Pruitt, fossil fuel companies, and other special interests now with business before the EPA. These documents, the Senators write, may call into question Pruitt's ability to do his job impartially as required by federal administrativ… Continue Reading


Carper, Whitehouse Call for Hearing on Lobbyist Friend Planning Pruitt’s Morocco Trip

Washington, DC - Senators Tom Carper (D-DE) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) released the following statement on a report that EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt's December trip to Morocco was arranged by a longtime friend and lobbyist, who has since won a $40,000-a-month contract to help the Moroccan government promote its cultural and economic interests. It was also revealed today that the trip cost roughly $100,000, well above what was previously known. "We have been pushing for answers on Adminis… Continue Reading


Senate Declares April 29-May 5 National Senior Corps Week

Washington, DC -The U.S. Senate passed a bipartisan resolution introduced by Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and Bill Cassidy (R-LA) declaring April 29 through May 5, 2018, National Senior Corps Week in recognition of the contributions of the more than 220,000 senior volunteers across the country. "This week we honor the hundreds of thousands of seniors across the nation, including thousands of in Rhode Island, who want to make our nation a better place," said Whitehouse. "Investing in progr… Continue Reading


Whitehouse Announces Opposition to Haspel Nomination for CIA Director

Washington, DC - Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) today announced his opposition to the nomination of Gina Haspel to lead the Central Intelligence Agency: "Torture is disqualifying. It is disqualifying for those who commit the act of violence. It is disqualifying for those who give the order, follow the order, or supply the pretext for the order. And it is disqualifying for those who help to cover it up. "We know Ms. Haspel was a willing participant in one of the darkest episodes in the C… Continue Reading


Shaheen, Whitehouse Send Letters to Major Banks Requesting Details on Action Taken Following The Trump Administration’s Publication of Russian “Oligarchs List”

(Washington, DC)-U.S. Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), a member of the Senate Foreign Relations and Armed Services committees, and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) of the Senate Judiciary and Finance committees, recently sent letters to eight major American and European financial institutions requesting details on any actions taken following the Trump administration's publication of the so-called "Oligarchs List," a list of wealthy Russians with close ties to the Kremlin. The senators sent letters to B… Continue Reading


Whitehouse Demands to Know Whether EPA Air Official Is Recused from Deciding Fate of Former Clients

Washington, DC - In a letter to EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt today, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) demanded to know what regulatory work the head of EPA's Office of Air and Radiation William Wehrum is recused from. Wehrum is a former white-shoe attorney who represented utilities and corporate interests that the EPA polices, some of which are engaged in litigation against the EPA to try to roll back critical air protections. As part of his ethics agreement with the agency, Wehrum stipulate… Continue Reading


RI Delegation Announces Second $2.1 Million Round of Federal Funding for RI Opioid Response

Washington, DC - U.S. Senators Sheldon Whitehouse and Jack Reed and Congressmen Jim Langevin and David Cicilline today announced $2.1 million in federal funding for Rhode Island's Department of Behavioral Healthcare, Developmental Disabilities and Hospitals (BHDDH) to stem the opioid epidemic that claimed the lives of hundreds of Rhode Islanders last year. The funding is part of a second $485 million round of grants nationwide that was authorized in 2016 by Congress in the 21st Century Cures Ac… Continue Reading


Carper, Whitehouse Raise New Questions about Pruitt Security Chief’s Side Gig

Washington, DC - Today, Senators Tom Carper (D-DE) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) asked the EPA's Designated Agency Ethics Official Kevin Minoli to detail his office's approval of outside employment for Administrator Scott Pruitt's head of security, Pasquale "Nino" Perrotta, and other EPA employees. The Senators point out that the authorization EPA used to defend Perrotta's side job appears to violate EPA's regulations governing outside employment. Not only has the authorization expired, it doe… Continue Reading


Hatch, Whitehouse Introduce Legislation to Empower DEA’s Regulation of SARMs

Washington, DC- US Senators Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) introduced the SARMs Control Act of 2018. Selective androgen receptor modulators, or SARMs, are synthetic drugs designed to mimic the effects of testosterone. This bipartisan bill builds on the success of the Designer Anabolic Steroids Control Act of 2014 by extending the Drug Enforcement Administration's authority to regulate anabolic steroids to include SARMs. SARMs are associated with serious safety concerns, includ… Continue Reading

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