Press Releases

December 05, 2018

Wyden Presses Justice Department on Whitaker, Benczkowski Conflicts of Interest

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden is asking the Department of Justice to detail its handling of the serious financial, professional, and political conflicts of interest of Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker and Assistant Attorney General for the Criminal Division, Brian Benczkowski. In a letter this week signed by 10 other senators, Wyden noted that the two officials' activities before arriving at the Justice Department present ethical concerns that agency ethics officials have … Continue Reading


December 03, 2018

Wyden, Merkley Demand Trump Revoke Illegal Proclamation Targeting Asylum Seekers

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley joined their colleagues in calling on Donald Trump to immediately revoke an illegal Presidential Proclamation that would drastically limit the ability of refugees to claim asylum. U.S. District Judge Jon Tigar recently granted a temporary restraining order blocking implementation of the Proclamation, which directly contradicts existing statute. "There is overwhelming evidence that this Proclamation is plainly illegal. Our immigration … Continue Reading


November 30, 2018

Wyden Calls for Assistance for Winegrape Growers Threatened by Wildfire Smoke Related Losses

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today urged colleagues to provide additional federal assistance for winegrape growers facing serious losses from wildfire smoke damage. In a letter to Senate Appropriations Committee leadership, Wyden requested that any year-end funding bill include an extension of the Wildfires and Hurricanes Indemnity Program to provide a measure of compensation for winegrape growers and other producers affected by natural disasters. Wyden also requested … Continue Reading


November 28, 2018

Congress Sends Wyden, Merkley Earthquake Resilience Act to President’s Desk

Washington, D.C. - The House of Representatives has passed a bipartisan bill co-sponsored by Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley to improve earthquake preparedness in Oregon and nationwide. The National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program Reauthorization Act modernizes earthquake-safety programs that help states prepare for and respond to earthquakes. "Being as prepared as we can be for natural disasters is the name of the game. When the West Coast is struck by a large earthquake it is … Continue Reading


November 28, 2018

Wyden, Crapo Lead Bipartisan call to Reauthorize Secure Rural Schools Funding in Year-end Legislation

WASHINGTON - Citing the importance of the Secure Rural Schools (SRS) program, Oregon Senator Ron Wyden and Idaho Senator Mike Crapo today led a bipartisan call with 23 of their Senate colleagues calling for a one-year reauthorization of the program in any year-end funding measures. "Over the last nearly two decades, SRS has been a critical lifeline for over 775 counties in over 40 states across the country by helping fund more than 4,400 schools, road maintenance, law enforcement, and search … Continue Reading


November 27, 2018

Wyden, Heinrich, Reed Introduce Bill Requiring Public Report on Khashoggi Murder by Saudi Arabia

Washington, D.C. -Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., Sen. Martin Heinrich, D-N.M., and Sen. Jack Reed, D-R.I., introduced legislation today requiring a public report on the killing of Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi, following Donald Trump's announcement that his administration will not respond to Khashoggi's killing by Saudi officials. "Bowing to the Saudi government over the murder of a Washington Post columnist is unacceptable for any American president, let alone one who claims to put … Continue Reading


November 20, 2018

Wyden Statement In Response to Khashoggi Announcement

Washington, D.C. -Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., released the following statement in response to Donald Trump's announcement today giving Saudi Arabia a pass for the murder of Jamal Khashoggi: "Donald Trump's statement makes clear that he does not care who ordered the brutal murder of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi. "Putting America first does not include subservience to the leaders of an authoritarian and murderous monarchy. Under Donald Trump's reasoning, there is no atrocity Saudi … Continue Reading


November 19, 2018

Wyden, Crapo, Merkley, Risch Urge Re-authorization of Rural Resource Advisory Committees

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden (D-OR), Mike Crapo (R-ID), Jeff Merkley (D-OR) and James Risch (R-ID) today urged federal officials to reauthorize citizen committees that provide key advice for important natural resources work in national forests. The senators' bipartisan letter to Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue seeks prompt reauthorization of the national Resource Advisory Committee (RAC) charter under the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act … Continue Reading


November 19, 2018

Wyden Says Radioactive Waste Changes Need More Public Input

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden today asked the federal Department of Energy (DOE) to extend the public comment period about its proposed new definition of high-level radioactive waste. Wyden said in a letter to DOE that its 60-day public comment period starting Oct. 10 is far too short given the magnitude of the proposed changes. "You recently received a request by more than six dozen organizations from across the country requesting that you extend the comment period in this … Continue Reading


November 16, 2018

Wyden, Merkley Press Private Prison Companies on Compliance with Federal Immigration Detention Standards

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today asked the country's two largest private immigration detention contractors for information about their compliance with federal immigration detention standards. The letters from Wyden, Merkley and nine other senators to contractors GEO Group and CoreCivic follows a troubling report by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Office of the Inspector General (OIG) about unsafe conditions and mistreatment of immigrants at a number of … Continue Reading


November 16, 2018

Wyden, Crapo Introduce Secure Rural Schools Extension Bill

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Mike Crapo today introduced bipartisan legislation to extend the Secure Rural Schools program by one year, through Fiscal Year 2019. The Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act (SRS) was first introduced in 2000 to assist counties containing tracts of federally-owned land that is tax-exempt. Critical services at the county level have historically been funded in part with a 25 percent share of timber receipts from federal Forest … Continue Reading


November 15, 2018

Wyden, Welch Introduce Legislation to Improve Child Nutrition

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and U.S. Representative Peter Welch, D-Vt., today introduced the Local School Foods Expansion Act, legislation to improve child nutrition by expanding access to locally-grown, unprocessed fruits and vegetables for school meal programs. "No child should be hungry in school-it's devastating to their health and ability to learn. This bill will help address hunger and improve child nutrition in communities across America, all while supporting … Continue Reading


November 15, 2018

Wyden Opposes FERC Nominee Who Wants to Bailout Coal & Nuclear Corporations at the Expense of Everyday Americans

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today announced that he will oppose the nomination of Bernard L. McNamee to be a Member of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (the FERC or the Commission). Wyden released the following statement: "It is clear that Mr. McNamee played a pivotal role in developing the U.S. Department of Energy policy that would have reached into American household budgets to pad the pockets of coal and nuclear corporations-a policy so outrageous that it … Continue Reading


November 15, 2018

Wyden, Markey, Blumenthal Query Mobile Carriers About Throttling Practices

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden, Edward J. Markey and Richard Blumenthal today sent letters to AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, and T-Mobile after a recent study revealed the companies were slowing down certain services on their networks. A study using data collected from an app called "Wehe" showed that each mobile carrier has been throttling at least one video streaming service. The research indicated that Netflix, YouTube, Amazon Prime, and NBC Sports have all been subject to … Continue Reading


November 15, 2018

Wyden, Merkley, DeFazio, Huffman Again Urge for Immediate Chetco River Protections

Washington, D.C. - Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley and Reps. Peter DeFazio and Jared Huffman today strongly urged federal officials to extend interim mineral withdrawal protections, which expired earlier this year, for the iconic Chetco River in southwest Oregon. In a letter to Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke and Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, the lawmakers wrote: "Given the unique and valuable resource values of the Chetco River, the immediate and serious threat they face, and the … Continue Reading


November 14, 2018

Wyden, Merkley & DeFazio Announce Additional Protections for Lifesaving Coast Guard Facility in Newport

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley and U.S. Rep. Peter DeFazio today announced Senate passage of additional protections for the lifesaving Coast Guard air facility in Newport, Oregon that were included in the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2018. "This facility is critical to the Coast Guard's search-and-rescue operations. It can make the difference between life and death both for central Oregon Coast residents and visitors to our state's beaches," said Wyden. "Today's … Continue Reading


November 14, 2018

Wyden, Harris Introduce Legislation to Improve Resettlement Process for Unaccompanied Children, Protect Sponsors

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Kamala D. Harris today introduced legislation that would provide for the safety and welfare of unaccompanied children. The Families Not Facilities Act would prohibit U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) from using information gathered in resettling unaccompanied immigrant children to take civil enforcement actions against individuals in the homes of prospective sponsors, while shifting ICE enforcement funds to the needs of at-risk … Continue Reading


November 07, 2018

Wyden Statement on Trump’s Appointment of Matt Whitaker as Acting Attorney General to Protect Himself from Mueller Investigation

Washington, D.C. -Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., warned against any interference in Robert Mueller's investigation following the announcement that Matt Whitaker would be named acting attorney general. Last year, Whitaker speculated that Trump would fire Jeff Sessions and appoint a replacement to cut Mueller's budget and prevent Mueller from continuing a full investigation of Trump and his campaign's ties to Russia. He also asserted that any Mueller investigation into Trump's financial ties to Russia … Continue Reading


November 05, 2018

Wyden: Voting Machine Problems, Long Lines, Demonstrate Need for Paper Ballots and Vote By Mail

Washington, D.C. -Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., renewed his call for paper ballots and voting by mail, following reports of voting machine glitches in Georgia and Texas and long lines at early voting sites across the country. "This election has already put a spotlight on the fact that too many voters are stuck with glitchy, insecure voting machines that are hard to use and easy to hack. There's a better way: Paper ballots and voting at home give voters the convenience and security they want, … Continue Reading


November 05, 2018

Wyden, Merkley Announce Nearly $10 Million in Head Start Grants for Oregon

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today announced that Head Start programs in Multnomah, Jackson and Yamhill counties will receive more than $9.9 million in federal grants. "As a long-time supporter of Head Start, I know these investments in Oregonians at an early age produces lifetime dividends for them and their communities," Wyden said. "Providing preschool children with early educational opportunities increases their opportunity to move up America's economic ladder, … Continue Reading

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