Press Releases

01.18.17

Whitehouse to Join Women’s March on Washington

Washington, DC - U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse is set to join hundreds of thousands of women from across the country in what promises to be a historic Women's March on Washington on Saturday, January 21. The event is scheduled for the day after President-elect Donald Trump will take office. "I will march arm-in-arm with women from Rhode Island and across the country to send a clear message to the Trump administration that when it comes to protecting the hard-fought rights of women, we are go… Continue Reading


01.18.17

Whitehouse Stands Up for RI Fishermen, Environment in Pruitt Hearing

Washington, DC - In a hearing of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse today asked Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, President-elect Donald Trump's nominee for Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), whether he would support the fishing and aquaculture industries in the face of climate change, and whether he would protect Rhode Islanders from out-of-state polluters. "As we discussed when you and I met, the oceans off our Oc… Continue Reading


01.18.17

Whitehouse Statement on DeVos Confirmation Hearing

Washington, DC - Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), a member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee, released the following statement on the confirmation hearing of Elisabeth DeVos to be Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education, which the Committee held last night: "Rhode Islanders have serious concerns about Mrs. DeVos's nomination and last night's hasty, after-hours hearing didn't come close to addressing them. In fact, her testimony raised more questions than it… Continue Reading


01.17.17

Ethics Officials Confirm Gap in Reporting Laws for Dark Money

Washington, DC - Today, the Office of Government Ethics (OGE) and the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) top ethics official responded to Senate letters regarding EPA Administrator nominee Scott Pruitt and revealed a significant gap in ethics reporting requirements that allows cabinet nominees to avoid disclosing potentially serious conflicts of interest. "These letters make it clear that it's on Scott Pruitt to come clean to the United States Senate about the kind of dark money influence… Continue Reading


01.13.17

Senator “Shocked” at Outpouring of Support for Pruitt from Koch Front Groups

Washington, DC - Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) reacted today to a letter released by 24 groups supporting the nomination of Scott Pruitt to be Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency. "I am 'shocked, shocked' that the vast network of Koch brothers front groups have put their logos on a letterhead for Scott Pruitt. Actually, I'm only surprised it took so long. Of course front groups who have vowed to prevent congressional action on climate change have weighed in to support a m… Continue Reading


01.12.17

Whitehouse Dedicates Vote Against Fast Tracking Affordable Care Act Repeal to Woonsocket Teen

Washington, DC - In the early hours of the morning on the floor of the U.S. Senate, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse today cast his vote against a Republican budget resolution aimed at fast tracking repeal of the Affordable Care Act in honor of Charlie, a 14-year-old boy from Woonsocket. "I am going to do everything in my power to fight the attempt to take away the affordable health care that Charlie and tens of thousands of Rhode Islanders rely on," said Whitehouse. "Without the Affordable Care Ac… Continue Reading


01.12.17

EPW Members Push for Answers on Pruitt Ethics Concerns

Washington, D.C. - Members of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee sent letters to the Office of Government Ethics and the lead ethics official at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today asking a series of questions related to the ethics review of President-elect Donald Trump's nominee for EPA Administrator, Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt. In their letter to the Office of Government Ethics, the Senators ask about Pruitt's obligation to disclose critical information … Continue Reading


01.12.17

Whitehouse Votes to Allow Mattis to Serve

Washington, DC - U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) voted today in favor of a one-time waiver of the law prohibiting recently retired military officers from serving as Secretary of Defense, in order to permit the appointment of retired Marine Gen. James Mattis by President-elect Donald Trump. Current law bars the appointment of any individual to head the Defense Department within seven years of relief from active duty as a regular commissioned officer of the armed forces. Since Mattis reti… Continue Reading


01.11.17

CLEAN NUCLEAR ENERGY, RESEARCH ADVANCED IN BIPARTISAN SENATE BILL

Washington, D.C. - Private-sector innovators in nuclear energy and government researchers will work hand-in-hand to create the next generation of clean, advanced nuclear power under bi-partisan legislation introduced today in the U.S. Senate. Senators Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-Rhode Island), Jim Risch (R-Idaho), Cory Booker (D-New Jersey), Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), today re-introduced the Nuclear Energy Innovation Capabilities Act (NEICA). The legis… Continue Reading


01.10.17

Whitehouse Presses Attorney General Nominee For Answers About Protecting Rhode Islanders’ Civil Rights

Washington, DC - In a hearing of the Senate Judiciary Committee, U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse today questioned President-elect Donald Trump's nominee for Attorney General, Senator Jeff Sessions (R-AL), about the nominee's past statements disparaging immigrant groups and prominent civil rights organizations. "I'm from Rhode Island, as you know, Senator," began Whitehouse. "We have NAACP and ACLU members who have heard that you called their organizations un-American. We have a vibrant Domini… Continue Reading


01.10.17

Senators Urge Judiciary Committee to Prevent Politicization of Justice Department Under Trump

Washington, D.C. - With Senator Jeff Sessions's (R-AL) confirmation hearing underway, members of the Senate Judiciary Committee have written to Judiciary Chairman Charles Grassley (R-IA) requesting that the Committee serve as a bulwark against any politicization of the U.S. Department of Justice during the Trump administration. In their letter, the Senators cite both the targeting of attorneys within the Department based on their previous advocacy and recent actions taken by the Trump transitio… Continue Reading


01.05.17

Whitehouse Delivers Cybersecurity Recommendations for Trump Administration

Washington, DC - Today, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) joined House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Michael McCaul (R-TX) and members of the Center for Strategic and International Studies' Cyber Policy Task Force to announce recommendations to the 45th President for strengthening the nation's cybersecurity. Whitehouse, Ranking Member of the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime and Terrorism, served as a co-chair of the Task Force. The recommendations were included in a report released… Continue Reading


01.05.17

HELP Committee Members Request Details of DeVos’s Connections to Dark Money Groups

Washington, D.C. - Members of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee wrote to president-elect Donald Trump's nominee for Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education, Betsy DeVos, requesting information on her involvement with the American Federation for Children and the Great Lakes Education Project, dark money political groups with ties to the American Legislative Exchange Council and other Koch brothers organizations. DeVos is a member of the Kochs' donor network … Continue Reading


01.03.17

Whitehouse, Baldwin, Warren, and Feinstein Introduce Bill to Limit Tax Windfalls for Billionaires in the Trump Administration

Washington, DC - Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), and Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) reintroduced legislation today to prevent President-elect Donald Trump's enormously wealthy cabinet nominees - and possibly Trump himself - from ducking millions of dollars in taxes. A little-known provision of the tax code currently allows executive branch and judicial appointees to defer paying taxes on profits from assets they sell to comply with ethics rules. The … Continue Reading


12.28.16

EPW Members Call on Pruitt to Reveal Connections to Secretive Group Coordinating EPA Challenges

Washington, DC - Members of the Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee have sent a letter to president-elect Donald Trump's nominee for Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator, Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, requesting information on his involvement with the Rule of Law Defense Fund, a secretive tax-exempt group that has helped to coordinate challenges to the EPA. While the Fund has been linked to the Koch brothers' network of conservative organizations, most o… Continue Reading


12.20.16

Reed, Whitehouse Call on Trump to Help Congress Bring Down Drug Prices

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse today joined 18 Senate colleagues in sending a letter to President-elect Donald Trump outlining specific steps his Administration should take to help Congress bring down the cost of prescription drugs. "It is undeniable that more and more families are struggling to access medications, and in many cases, are forced to choose between paying for prescription drugs and other necessities, like food and shelter. The American public is f… Continue Reading


12.20.16

Whitehouse Discusses Trump Nominee for U.S. Attorney General

Providence, RI - U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse yesterday brought together more than a dozen Rhode Islanders representing civil rights organizations, the legal community, government, and other constituencies to hear Rhode Islanders' thoughts about President-elect Trump's nomination of Senator Jeff Sessions (R-AL) for United States Attorney General. Whitehouse is a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, which has scheduled a nomination hearing for Sessions on January 10 and 11. "The United … Continue Reading


12.15.16

Whitehouse Gathers RI Feedback on Education Secretary Nominee

Providence, RI - U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse yesterday convened more than a dozen Rhode Islanders who have a stake in public education to gather feedback on the President-elect's nomination of Betsy DeVos to lead the U.S. Department of Education. Whitehouse is a member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee, which is expected to hold a confirmation hearing for DeVos in January. "I'm grateful to all those who joined me to discuss the qualities Rhode Islanders are loo… Continue Reading


12.15.16

Whitehouse Calls on U.S. Education Secretary to Issue Guidance to Help Support Middle School Students

Providence, RI - On the heels of a visit to West Broadway Middle School in Providence this week, U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse wrote to Secretary of Education John King requesting that the U.S. Department of Education build on the parts of the federal education reform law that focus on middle schools, which Whitehouse authored as a member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee. Specifically, Whitehouse requests in the letter that the Department provide clear, ready-to-… Continue Reading


12.15.16

Whitehouse Statement on Nomination of Rex Tillerson for Secretary of State

Providence, RI - Today, it was announced that President-elect Donald Trump has chosen ExxonMobil chief executive Rex W. Tillerson to serve as Secretary of State. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse issued the following statement on the selection: "Donald Trump pledged to 'drain the swamp' of corporate insiders in Washington to ensure that our government serves the American people, not massive corporations like ExxonMobil. That's why it's disturbing to see operatives of the Koch brothers, Exxon, and ot… Continue Reading

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