Press Releases

02.23.17

Whitehouse Calls On Education Secretary to Guard Against Conflicts of Interest

Washington, DC - Senator Sheldon Whitehouse joined Senators Patty Murray (D-WA), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Richard J. Durbin (D-IL), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), and Maggie Hassan (D-NH) to write to Education Secretary Betsy DeVos regarding reports that President Trump has asked Jerry L. Falwell, Jr., President of Liberty University, to lead a new "task force" to recommend changes to federal regulations, policies, and procedures in higher education. Such a task force could make recommendations on the f… Continue Reading


02.22.17

Whitehouse Statement on Court-Ordered Release of Pruitt Emails

Washington, DC - The office of former Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt has released over 7,500 emails between that office and representatives of industries Pruitt is now charged with regulating as Administrator of Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The release comes after an Oklahoma court ruled Pruitt's office had unlawfully withheld them prior to his Senate confirmation. The emails were requested by the Center for Media and Democracy through an Oklahoma state open records law in 20… Continue Reading


02.21.17

Senators Lodge Concerns About Icahn’s Control of Renewable Fuel Standard

Washington, DC - The White House has ignored seven Senators' request for information on oil refining executive Carl Icahn's role in determining the fate of the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS)-a regulation that Icahn claims will cost his business hundreds of millions of dollars a year. Now the group has filed that request with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as part of its notice and comment process. In a letter sent to White House Counsel Don McGahn last Monday, February 13, the Senato… Continue Reading


02.17.17

Whitehouse Statement on Oklahoma Court Ruling Requiring Disclosure of Pruitt Emails

Washington, DC - Today, Oklahoma District Court Judge Aletia Haynes Timmons ruled that Environmental Protection Agency Administrator nominee Scott Pruitt must release roughly 3,000 email communications between him and the fossil fuel industry. The ruling comes on the eve of Pruitt's confirmation vote in the Senate. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, a member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee (EPW), issued the following statement on the Court's decision: "Scott Pruitt sat on this i… Continue Reading


02.17.17

Whitehouse Statement on Pruitt Confirmation

Washington, DC - The Senate confirmed Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt today by a vote of 52-46 to serve as Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, a member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, released the following statement on the vote: "Allowing this nominee to scoot through the Senate without his full record before us is a plain abdication of our constitutional responsibility. Throughout this confirmation process, it has bee… Continue Reading


02.16.17

Whitehouse Statement on Mulvaney Confirmation

Washington, DC - Today, the Senate voted 51-49 to confirm Congressman Mick Mulvaney (R-SC) to serve as Director of the Office of Management and Budget. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, a member of the Senate Budget Committee, released the following statement on today's vote: "In Congress, Mick Mulvaney played fast and loose with the full faith and credit of the United States by opposing debt ceiling measures and supporting government shutdowns. "At his confirmation hearing, he had a chance to pivo… Continue Reading


02.16.17

Senators Demand Scott Pruitt Recuse Himself from All Issues Related to Lawsuits He Brought Against the EPA to Overturn or Weaken Clean Air and Water Pollution Rules

Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), a member of the Environment and Public Works Committee, joined 29 other senators in calling on Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator nominee Scott Pruitt to recuse himself from participating in any matter related to litigation that he pursued against the EPA as Oklahoma Attorney General. In the letter, the senators specifically call on Mr. Pruitt to recuse himself from decisions on how the EPA will defend itself against the lawsuits he brought for… Continue Reading


02.16.17

Senators Raise Concerns about Executive Order on “Two for One” Regulatory Reform

WASHINGTON-Today, U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse joined eight colleagues in sending a letter to Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Acting Director Mark Sandy to raise concerns and questions about President Trump's executive order to establish a "two for one" rule under which federal agencies are required to identify two existing regulations for elimination for every new regulation issued. In the letter, the senators raise concerns that the arbitrary "two for one" limit on rulemaking imped… Continue Reading


02.15.17

Whitehouse Statement on Meeting with Gorsuch

Washington, DC - Today at his office, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, met with President Donald Trump's nominee for the Supreme Court, United States Circuit Judge Neil Gorsuch. Whitehouse released the following statement on the meeting: "I was glad Judge Gorsuch and I could meet today. I have heard a number of concerns from Rhode Islanders about his nomination and we covered a great deal of ground. "In recent years, the Supreme Court has deliv… Continue Reading


02.15.17

Senators Weigh in on Court Case Seeking Release of Critical Documents on Pruitt Ties to Fossil Fuel Industry

Washington, D.C. - Today, a group of Senators weighed in with an Oklahoma court on a legal action seeking to require the Office of the Oklahoma Attorney General to release documents relating to Environmental Protection Agency Administrator nominee Scott Pruitt's connections to the fossil fuel industry. The Senators, all members of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, had requested the information from Pruitt during his confirmation process. Rather than divulge it, Pruitt referred… Continue Reading


02.15.17

Whitehouse Statement on Puzder Withdrawing Nomination

Washington, DC - Senator Sheldon Whitehouse today released the following statement after Andrew Puzder withdrew his nomination to serve as President Trump's Secretary of Labor: "I'm glad Mr. Puzder withdrew his nomination. Rhode Islanders have told me they want a Labor Secretary who will enforce the labor laws that protect working families' bottom lines, like safeguards against stolen wages, sexual harassment, and unsafe working conditions. I hope the President will replace Mr. Puzder with a … Continue Reading


02.14.17

Whitehouse Statement on Mnuchin Confirmation

Washington, DC - Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) issued the following statement tonight on the Senate's 53-47 vote to confirm Steven Mnuchin to be Secretary of the Treasury: "As the Great Recession destroyed jobs and home values in Rhode Island, Mr. Mnuchin earned the nickname 'The Foreclosure King,' by foreclosing on tens of thousands of middle-class Americans. Families and small businesses in Rhode Island deserve a Treasury Secretary who understands the challenges they face and whose top p… Continue Reading


02.13.17

Whitehouse and Udall Call on Republicans to End Trump’s ‘Rash’ Behavior at Mar-a-Lago

Washington, DC - Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and Tom Udall (D-NM) released the following statement on President Donald Trump's visit to the Trump Organization's Mar-a-Lago club this past weekend, where numerous accounts suggest national security information was put at risk. Earlier this month, Whitehouse and Udall wrote to the White House asking who is paying the hundreds of thousands of dollars necessary for unlimited access to the newly christened executive mansion in West Palm Beach. … Continue Reading


02.13.17

Senators Demand Answers About Icahn’s White House Role

Washington, D.C. - In a letter sent to White House Counsel Don McGahn today, a group of Senators demand to know what role oil refining executive Carl Icahn is playing in President Donald Trump's White House, how he affected the selection of Scott Pruitt to be Trump's nominee for Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator, and to what extent Icahn controls the destiny of an EPA regulation that Icahn claims will cost his business hundreds of millions of dollars. Senators Sheldon Whitehou… Continue Reading


02.10.17

Senators to White House Counsel: You Must Stop “Buy Ivanka’s Stuff” Conflicts of Interest

Washington, D.C. - Today, Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Tom Carper (D-DE), Tom Udall (D-NM), Edward J. Markey (D-MA), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), and Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) urged the White House Counsel to take decisive action to end the troubling pattern of apparently blatant conflicts of interest plaguing the Trump Administration. Counselor to President Donald Trump, Kellyanne Conway, appeared on Fox News yesterday from the White House briefing room, entreating viewers to "go buy Ivanka's… Continue Reading


02.10.17

Whitehouse Statement on Price Confirmation

Washington, DC - Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), a member of the Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee, issued the following statement today on the Senate's 52-47 vote to confirm Congressman Tom Price (R-GA) to be Secretary of Health and Human Services: "Right now, one-year-old Henry from Warwick, Rhode Island, who's battling cystic fibrosis, can no longer be denied insurance because of his pre-existing condition. Martha from Cranston doesn't have to worry about her son, who can … Continue Reading


02.09.17

Reed, Whitehouse Seek Answers About Outrageous Price Hike for Anti-Opioid Drug

Washington, DC - In an effort to ensure that lifesaving overdose prevention drugs remain accessible and affordable, U.S. Senators Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse are pressing for answers from a leading pharmaceutical company about the dramatic price hike for a life-saving medication used to respond to opioid overdoses. Recent reports unveiled that drug maker Kaléo Pharmaceuticals, which manufactures an easy-to-use injector device containing the overdose-reversing drug naloxone, raised i… Continue Reading


02.09.17

Whitehouse Statement on 9th Circuit Ruling Against Travel Ban

Washington, DC - Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, released the following statement on the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruling tonight against the Trump administration's executive order banning refugees and immigrants from certain majority-Muslim nations: "Tonight, the Ninth Circuit denied the Trump administration's appeal and joined the growing list of authorities questioning the legality of this order and whether it does anything to make us safer. That's… Continue Reading


02.08.17

Whitehouse: “Let Liz speak!”

Washington, DC - Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) yesterday evening took to the Senate floor in support of his colleague, Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), who had been silenced by Senate Republicans after reading a 1986 letter from Coretta Scott King, the widow of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. King's letter, which illustrated her thoughts on the character of Senator Jeff Sessions (R-AL), had been submitted to the Senate decades earlier when Sessions was nominated for a federal judgeship. Sessio… Continue Reading


02.08.17

Whitehouse Statement on Sessions Confirmation

Washington, DC - Tonight, the Senate voted 52-47 to confirm Senator Jeff Sessions (R-AL) to be President Donald Trump's Attorney General. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, released the following statement on the vote: "So far, this President has shown little regard for what the Justice Department and the law have to say. He fired a top career Justice attorney when she disagreed with a legally dubious, poorly vetted, and un-American executive order.… Continue Reading

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