Press Releases

12.09.15

Senate Approves K-12 Overhaul

Washington, DC - The U.S. Senate today voted to ease the burdensome requirements of the No Child Left Behind education law, help reduce reliance on high-stakes testing, and expand access to a quality education for all students. The bipartisan Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), which updates federal elementary and secondary education policies, was approved by a vote of 85-12. The legislation, having already been acted on by the House of Representatives, will now be signed into law by President … Continue Reading


12.08.15

Rhode Island Arts Groups Receive $125,000 in Federal Grants

Providence, RI - U.S. Senators Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse and Congressmen Jim Langevin and David Cicilline cheered $125,000 in National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) funding for Rhode Island arts organizations. The NEA grants will help the groups pursue arts research, bring dance and theater productions to the stage, and promote the arts among Rhode Island youth. "I am pleased that Rhode Island arts organizations have been selected to receive these federal grants to help boost education t… Continue Reading


12.04.15

Whitehouse and Colleagues File Supreme Court Brief in Support of President Obama’s Immigration Executive Actions

Washington, DC - U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), together with several members of the Senate and House of Representatives, filed a "friend of the court" brief in support of the Department of Justice's petition for Supreme Court review of the President's immigration executive actions. The brief argues that the President's actions are consistent with Congressional intent and the Executive Branch's legal authority to enforce our immigration laws. "When bipartisan immigration reform was s… Continue Reading


12.04.15

RI Delegation Backs FAST Act to Boost Transportation Investment in RI

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse and Representatives Jim Langevin and David Cicilline of Rhode Island applauded passage of a five-year $305 billion transportation authorization bill that should help provide states, communities, and businesses with a greater level of certainty. Under the new, bipartisan Fixing America's Surface Transportation (FAST) Act, roughly $205 billion would be authorized for highways, $48 billion would be authorized for transit, and the r… Continue Reading


12.03.15

Delegation Announces $18.2 Million for Water Infrastructure Improvements in Rhode Island

Washington, D.C. - After reversing proposed cuts to clean water infrastructure programs, U.S. Senators Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse and Congressmen Jim Langevin and David Cicilline announced $18.2 million in federal funding for water infrastructure projects in Rhode Island. Administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the funding will go to two federal-state loan programs that supply local water systems with low-interest financing for projects that protect public health a… Continue Reading


12.02.15

Sens. Markey, Whitehouse, Blumenthal to Obama: Reform Coal Leasing Program to Protect Climate Change Goals

Washington (December 2, 2015) - As President Obama joined with world leaders to help craft an international agreement on climate, Senators Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) called on the President to reform the federal coal leasing program to protect America's climate change goals. In a letter sent yesterday, the Senators called on President Obama use his executive authority to direct the Secretary of the Interior to significantly increase ro… Continue Reading


11.24.15

Delegation, NOAA, Clean The Bay Roll Out Plans for Marine Debris Cleanup of Providence & Seekonk Rivers

Providence, RI - Today in East Providence, the Rhode Island congressional delegation and a representative from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) joined Middletown-based nonprofit Clean The Bay (dba Clean Bays) as the group detailed plans to clean up marine debris along the Seekonk and Providence Rivers. For over 100 years, the Providence and Seekonk Rivers and portions of the Upper Narragansett Bay have been dirtied by broken and abandoned pilings, wrecked vessels, doc… Continue Reading


11.24.15

RI Congressional Delegation Urges Federal Energy Regulators to Properly Account for Renewable Energy Resources

Washington, D.C. - Today U.S. Senators Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse and Congressmen Jim Langevin and David Cicilline called on the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to improve the methods for projecting electricity capacity and setting energy prices across New England. In a letter to FERC Chairman Norman C. Bay, the Rhode Island delegation said the operator of New England's power grid insufficiently counts so-called distributed generation sources of energy, such as solar panels on… Continue Reading


11.23.15

Reed & Whitehouse Urge President Obama to Take Executive Action to Reduce Gun Violence

WASHINGTON, DC - Today, U.S. Senators Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse joined with 22 of their colleagues in urging President Barack Obama to investigate and pursue all possible options under his executive authority to reduce gun violence. In a letter to the President, the senators specially urged him to eliminate a loophole that currently allows individuals without a federal license to conduct high volumes of gun sales at gun shows, over the internet, and elsewhere, all without conducting backg… Continue Reading


11.23.15

Whitehouse Statement on the Passing of Dr. John A. Knauss

Providence, RI - U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) released the following statement upon hearing of the passing of former Dean of the University of Rhode Island Graduate School of Oceanography John A. Knauss: "Rhode Island has lost a beloved teacher, a visionary leader, and a brilliant scientist. Dean Knauss set out to create in the Ocean State a comprehensive oceanography and marine studies program. When he left the University of Rhode Island to head up the National Oceanic and Atmosphe… Continue Reading


11.18.15

House Passes Reform for Regulations Covering New Medical Therapies, Bill Heads to President’s Desk

Washington, D.C. - A new measure that would bring predictable timeframes to the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) scheduling process so new treatments can reach patients in a timely and transparent manner has passed in Congress and is now on its way to the President's desk. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., a member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) committee, and Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, a member and former chairman of the Senate HELP Committee, lauded House passage of… Continue Reading


11.18.15

Patriotic Millionaires Endorse Sen. Whitehouse’s DISCLOSE Act

Washington, DC - Today, the Patriotic Millionaires, a group of high-net worth individuals advocating for greater political and economic fairness, called for the passage of the DISCLOSE Act, legislation introduced by U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse to crack down on unlimited, secret spending in American elections. The endorsement is part of an agenda unveiled by the group to reverse the harmful concentration of "dark" political power in the hands of the very wealthy. "Since the Supreme Court's … Continue Reading


11.13.15

Sens. Whitehouse and Reed Honor RI Veteran for Service in WWII

Johnston, RI - Today, U.S. Sheldon Whitehouse awarded Senate certificates of recognition to 96-year-old Francis Norman Saran in honor of his service in the Army during World War II. Whitehouse presented Saran with the certificates on behalf of himself and his colleague, Senator Jack Reed. Johnston Mayor Joseph Polisena was also on hand to recognize Saran. Francis Saran, a lifelong Rhode Island resident, joined the Army as a young man and spent four years in the 272nd Infantry Regiment, a part … Continue Reading


11.06.15

Sen. Whitehouse Statement on Rejection of Keystone Pipeline

Washington, DC - U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) released the statement below today regarding President Obama's decision to reject the proposed Keystone XL pipeline: "The Keystone pipeline would have been a disaster for our environment and public health and would create only a few dozen permanent jobs. As the State Department's Final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement for the project made clear, at present and expected oil prices the additional carbon pollution from the pipelin… Continue Reading


11.05.15

Whitehouse Introduces Bill to Protect Aircraft from Drones

Washington, DC - Today, U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse introduced a bill to help protect American air traffic from the growing risk posed by drones. Whitehouse's Drone Operator Safety Act would make it a criminal offense to fly a drone in a way that interferes with the operation of manned aircraft in federal airspace. It also prohibits operators from flying drones in an airport's arrival or departure flight paths without permission from the airport's air traffic control tower. Violators woul… Continue Reading


11.05.15

Sen. Whitehouse Continues Focus on Campaign Finance Abuses by Nonprofit Groups

Washington, DC - Yesterday the Senate Judiciary Committee held a hearing on the nomination of Stuart F. Delery to be the Associate Attorney General of the United States. When questioning Delery, U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) brought up a topic which he has long sought to highlight: the failure of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to refer cases to the Department of Justice (DOJ) that appear to represent clear violations of the rules governing the political activity of tax-exempt 501(c… Continue Reading


11.04.15

Sen. Whitehouse Supporting Bill to Improve Treatment for Pregnant Women and Moms with Substance Use Disorders

Washington, DC - This week, U.S. Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Kelly Ayotte (R-NH), Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), and Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) introduced bipartisan legislation to improve treatment programs for pregnant women and mothers who have a substance use disorder. The Improving Treatment for Pregnant and Postpartum Women Act would reauthorize residential treatment programs for pregnant and postpartum women supported by the federal Center for Substance Abuse Treatment. The bill would als… Continue Reading


11.03.15

Senators to CEOs: Don’t Give Up on Congress in Climate Efforts

Washington, DC - With more than 80 major corporations now signed onto the White House's American Business Act on Climate Pledge, a group of U.S. Senators is writing to the CEOs of those companies to applaud their commitment, but to also deliver an important message: don't forget about Congress. "All of the President's work is critical, but Congress can play a key role in achieving our climate goals," the Senators write. "From our perspective your commitments have yet to resonate with many in C… Continue Reading


11.02.15

Whitehouse: Let’s Give States an Incentive to Reduce Inefficient Medicare Spending

Washington, DC - Last week, as the Senate prepared to vote on a two-year budget deal to avert a government shutdown and a default on our debt, U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) spoke about how high health care spending continues to hamper our federal budget, and suggested a new approach to reduce spending. While noting that he supports the new budget deal, he also described how we can do better in future budget discussions. Using a series of charts, Whitehouse described how higher amounts… Continue Reading


10.30.15

Whitehouse Cheers Return of Volvo Ocean Race to Newport

Washington, DC - Today, the Volvo Ocean Race named Newport an official stopover for its 2017-2018 race following a highly successful visit to the Rhode Island city in May 2015. U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse released the following statement regarding the announcement: "This is fantastic news for the City of Newport, the state of Rhode Island, and our ocean economy. The Volvo Ocean Race is a world-class competition that brings together some of the most talented sailors in the sport and draws … Continue Reading

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