Press Releases

03.25.20

Whitehouse Applauds Revised Bipartisan Legislation to Equip Hospitals, Buoy Middle Class Amid Pandemic

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse this morning threw his support behind a bipartisan deal for a third coronavirus legislative package that will inject $2 trillion into the national economy and send badly needed resources to Rhode Island hospitals, and to middle class families and local governments grappling with the financial downturn. Whitehouse issued the following statement on The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act: "COVID-19 has triggered an unprecedented p… Continue Reading


03.24.20

Congressional Delegation Announces $539K to Help RI Health Centers Fight COVID-19

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse along with Congressmen Jim Langevin and David Cicilline today announced $539,250 in grant funding from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to help eight Rhode Island health centers in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. Health centers may immediately use the awards to address screening and testing needs, acquire medical supplies, and boost their telehealth capacity. "Our trusted community health centers a… Continue Reading


03.23.20

Amid Widening Pandemic, Whitehouse, Warren Lead Call for Chamber of Commerce to Cease Lobbying Efforts that are Endangering Public Health and the Economic Needs of Millions of Americans

Text of Letter (PDF) Washington, D.C. -- United States Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), Brian Schatz (D-Hawai'i), Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), and Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.) sent a letter to the Chamber of Commerce demanding answers as to why the organization is lobbying against President Trump's use of the Defense Production Act -- an extraordinarily powerful tool that would allow him to quickly harness and use America's technological and man… Continue Reading


03.22.20

Whitehouse Statement on Coronavirus Package Procedural Vote

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) released the following statement after voting against a procedural vote to proceed to a third coronavirus legislative package: "Americans are counting on Congress to act swiftly to protect workers from financial ruin and fortify our health system and other core sectors of our economy. I voted against the Republican proposal because it did too much for corporations and not enough for our workforce and health care system. I am still hope… Continue Reading


03.18.20

Whitehouse Approves Emergency Package to Provide Relief for Rhode Islanders

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse this afternoon voted to approve a deal negotiated by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi that will put supports immediately in place for Rhode Island workers affected by the economic fallout from COVID-19. The Families First Coronavirus Response Act will also make coronavirus testing free. The legislation passed the Senate with overwhelming bipartisan support and awaits the President's signature. "I know Rhode Islanders are hurting right now. Small b… Continue Reading


03.18.20

Whitehouse, Senate Democrats Request Requirements for Airlines and Cruise Lines to Address Pollution in Financial Assistance Package

Washington, D.C. - As Congress considers a massive bailout for industries affected by the coronavirus outbreak, U.S. Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Martin Heinrich (D-NM), Ed Markey (D-MA), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Tina Smith (D-MN), and Cory Booker (D-NJ) today called on congressional leaders to ensure any financial assistance for major airlines and foreign-flagged cruise lines includes reasonable environmental requirements to address pollutio… Continue Reading


03.16.20

Congressional Delegation Wants Swift SBA Disaster Declaration for RI

WASHINGTON, DC - Rhode Island's Congressional delegation today urged the Trump Administration to quickly grant Rhode Island's request for the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) to issue an economic disaster declaration covering the state due to the outbreak of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). U.S. Senators Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse and Congressmen Jim Langevin and David Cicilline say the designation will help small business owners successfully apply for low-interest federal loans … Continue Reading


03.14.20

Whitehouse Welcomes Bipartisan Economic Relief Package

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse applauded the bipartisan deal passed by the U.S. House of Representatives last night to put supports in place for American workers and make coronavirus testing free. The measure would mandate paid medical and family leave, expand food security programs, and inject funding into state Medicaid programs. By one estimate, the legislation could direct $150 million to Rhode Island's Medicaid program. "Speaker Pelosi negotiated a good deal to provid… Continue Reading


03.12.20

Special Committee on the Climate Crisis Hears from Leading Experts on the Economic Risks of Climate Change

Washington, DC - On Thursday at the U.S. Capitol, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and Chairman Brian Schatz (D-HI) led a Senate Democrats' Special Committee on the Climate Crisis hearing entitled "The Economic Risks of Climate Change." Senate Democrats heard testimony from leading economists and climate experts, who warned them of the systemic economic risk associated with climate inaction. As the costs associated with climate change increase, so do the risks. ***Watch the full video of the… Continue Reading


03.11.20

Following Trump Address, Whitehouse Calls on President to Unlock Emergency Coronavirus Aid, Provide Robust Economic Stimulus for Workers

Washington, D.C. - Following an address to the nation by President Donald Trump, U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse tonight called on the President to issue an emergency declaration for the coronavirus pandemic and support an economic stimulus package that would help the workers whose livelihoods are most immediately at risk. "A lot of time was wasted through incompetence, and it matters now that we focus on adequate preparation, testing, and response to protect Americans, not on odd travel bans. … Continue Reading


03.11.20

Reed, Whitehouse to DeVos: Issue Clear Guidance for Schools and Families Dealing with Coronavirus Closures

Washington, D.C. - As schools in Rhode Island and across the country mull closures due to the coronavirus, U.S. Senators Jack Reed (D-RI) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) joined Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) and 30 Democratic Senators in urging Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos to provide guidance for school districts and institutions of higher education, as well as families and students. In a letter to Secretary DeVos, the senators stressed that it is crucial that the Department of Education provi… Continue Reading


03.11.20

Whitehouse, Utility Workers Union President James Slevin Issue United Call for Carbon Price in New Washington Post Op-Ed

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) has joined forces with James Slevin, president of the Utility Workers Union of America, to call for a price on the carbon emissions driving climate change and to use revenue raised by the fee to help the workers and communities that will be most affected by the resulting transition to renewable energy sources. The joint op-ed, which was published today on the editorial page of the Washington Post, marks the first time a national energy-s… Continue Reading


03.10.20

Whitehouse, Merkley Call Out Trump Administration for Handing Over NEPA Rulemaking Process to Fossil Fuel Polluters

Washington, DC - Today, Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and Jeff Merkley (D-OR) submitted an official comment on a proposal by the White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) that would block federal agencies from considering under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) the effects of federal government actions that contribute to climate change and other major environmental problems. The proposal is such a blatant giveaway to the fossil fuel industry, it constitutes an illegal d… Continue Reading


03.05.20

U.S. Senators Call on Employers to Offer Workers Flexibility in the Event of Widespread Coronavirus Outbreak

WASHINGTON, DC - In the event that workers are directed on medical advice to self-isolate because of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), U.S. Senators Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse are strongly urging major U.S. employers to commit that workers will not be penalized for following recommended health procedures to protect the public from further spread of the coronavirus. In a letter to major industry groups signed by Reed, Whitehouse, U.S. Senator Mark Warner (D-VA) and 13 U.S. Senators, the Se… Continue Reading


03.05.20

Senate Dems. Request Docs. Related To Leonard Leo’s Work Leading Trump Admin. Judicial Selections, Say Leo Hand-Picked Trump Judges While Raking In Undisclosed Sums From Related Advocacy Groups—A Potential Conflict Of Interest And Violation Of Federal Ethics Law

Washington, DC - Senate Democrats Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Dick Durbin (D-IL), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), and Mazie Hirono (D-HI) today sent a series of letters to Leonard Leo, U.S. Attorney General William Barr, Office of Personnel Management (OPM) Director Dale Cabaniss, White House Counsel Pat Cipollone, and Federalist Society President and CEO Eugene Meyer raising concerns with potential conflicts of interest related to Mr. Leo's work leading and advising the Trump ad… Continue Reading


03.04.20

Reed, Whitehouse, Senate Democrats to Azar: Trump Administration’s Health Care Sabotage Undermines Coronavirus Response

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Jack Reed (D-RI) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) today joined Senators Patty Murray (D-WA), Ron Wyden (D-OR), and other Democrats in demanding that Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) Alex Azar take immediate action to address the many ways the Trump Administration's health care sabotage has undermined our preparedness for and ability to respond to the novel coronavirus outbreak. Specifically, the Senators asked Secretary Azar to commit to making any pote… Continue Reading


03.04.20

RI Delegation Announces $500K from CDC to Bolster Coronavirus Containment Efforts; $4.9+ Million More on the Way in Bipartisan Supplemental Aid Package

Washington, D.C. - As Rhode Island ramps up efforts to contain the novel coronavirus, members of the state's congressional delegation announced an initial $500,000 grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to support statewide preparations. At least $4.9 million more in funding is expected to be provided to Rhode Island in the days ahead as part of an $8.3-billion bipartisan emergency supplemental aid package passed by the House today. The funding package could be approve… Continue Reading


03.04.20

Whitehouse, Merkley, Malinowski Write Pompeo to Correct Record, Call for Pompeo to Defend State Department Employees

Washington, DC - U.S. Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and Jeff Merkley (D-OR) and Congressman Tom Malinowski (D-NJ) have sent a letter to U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo correcting inaccurate comments by Pompeo at the Munich Security Conference and encouraging him to do more to support State Department employees in the face of unfounded attacks by political partisans. The members call Pompeo's failure to defend State Department employees, including former Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch, a … Continue Reading


03.03.20

Whitehouse Introduces Legislation to Strengthen Patient Safety

Washington, DC - U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) today introduced The Patient Safety Improvement Act to strengthen patient safety. The legislation seeks to reduce health care-associated infections (HAIs) and preserve the effectiveness of existing antibiotics. The bill includes new measures to improve safety for pediatric patients and to encourage better transitions of care across multiple health care settings and providers. "Health care-associated infections are a vexing challenge - da… Continue Reading


02.27.20

Sens. Whitehouse, Menendez, Enzi, Reps. Dingell, LaHood, Higgins, Bilirakis Introduce Bipartisan, Bicameral Legislation to Improve Hemophilia Patients’ Access to Health Care

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.), and U.S. Representatives Debbie Dingell (D-MI-12), Darin LaHood (R-IL-18), Brian Higgins (D-NY-26) and Gus Bilirakis (R-FL-12) today introduced the Hemophilia Skilled Nursing Facilities Access Act, bipartisan, bicameral legislation to improve access to critical health care services provided through Skilled Nursing Facilities (SNF) for individuals with hemophilia. Currently, Medicare patients … Continue Reading

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