Press Releases

February 07, 2017

Wyden Votes No on Betsy DeVos to Head the Department of Education

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today voted against the confirmation of Betsy DeVos to be the next secretary of the Department of Education. This morning on the Senate floor, he voiced his opposition to her confirmation, joining his colleagues who spoke through the night against DeVos. "Today I stand up for kids, parents and families who deserve education policies that will let them go after their dreams and secure their futures," Wyden said. "I believe they deserve … Continue Reading

February 06, 2017

Wyden, Merkley Introduce Resolution to Honor Civil Rights Hero Fred Korematsu

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley have introduced a resolution honoring Fred Korematsu, who challenged the internment of Japanese Americans.. Wyden and Merkley said the resolution honoring Korematsu's work and advocacy of the civil rights and liberties of all people is timely, given the president's executive order establishing a Muslim ban. "Fred Korematsu's brave advocacy for the civil rights of 120,000 Japanese Americans remains a timeless example of courage that … Continue Reading

February 03, 2017

Wyden, Merkley Co-sponsor Bill to Bring “Atomic Cleanup Veterans” The Health Care They Need

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley are cosponsoring a bipartisan bill to bring key health care benefits to "Atomic Veterans" exposed to high levels of harmful radiation when assigned to clean up nuclear testing sites during the late 1970s. The bipartisan Mark Takai Atomic Veterans Healthcare Parity Act - named after the late Congressman Mark Takai of Hawaii- would designate veterans who participated in the nuclear cleanup of Enewetak Atoll on the Marshall Islands as … Continue Reading

February 02, 2017

Wyden, Heinrich Express Concern on Selection of Gina Haspel to be Deputy Director of the CIA

Washington, D.C.- Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Sen. Martin Heinrich, D-N.M., today wrote the president to express concern at the selection of Gina Haspel to serve as deputy director of the Central Intelligence Agency. Their full letter is below. February 2, 2017 The PresidentThe White House1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NWWashington, DC 20500 Dear Mr. President: We write to express our concern at the announcement today that Ms. Gina Haspel has been named as the Deputy Director of the CIA. Her … Continue Reading

February 02, 2017

Wyden, 23 Senate Democrats Urge Senate Leaders to Protect the BLM Rule that Prevents Natural Gas Waste, Safeguards Health and Economic Growth

WASHINGTON - Today, 24 Senate Democrats, led by U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), and Tom Udall (D-N.M.) urged Senate leaders to defend the Bureau of Land Management's (BLM) Methane and Natural Gas Waste Prevention Rule, which protects air quality and prevents the waste of taxpayer-owned natural gas on federal and Tribal lands, by opposing efforts to dismantle it through the rarely used and extremely dangerous process set out in the Congressional Review Act. In a letter to Majority Leader … Continue Reading

January 31, 2017

Wyden Statement on Nomination of Gorsuch to the United States Supreme Court

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today expressed serious concerns about the nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court: "The Gorsuch nomination represents a breathtaking retreat from the notion that Americans have a fundamental right to Constitutional liberties, and harkens back to the days when politicians restricted a people's rights on a whim," Wyden said. "His opposition to legal death with dignity as successfully practiced in Oregon is couched … Continue Reading

January 31, 2017

Wyden Statement on Senate Panel Vote for Energy Secretary

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., released the following statement after voting against the nomination of former Texas Governor Rick Perry to lead the U.S. Department of Energy, in a Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee meeting today: "I pressed Gov. Perry on what he would do to change the culture for workers at the Department of Energy given the department's disturbing history of retaliating against whistleblowers. I also asked him about his plans to clean up our … Continue Reading

January 31, 2017

Wyden Abstains from Voting on Zinke Nomination to be Secretary of the Interior

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today released the following statement after abstaining from voting on the nomination of Rep. Ryan Zinke to lead the U.S. Department of the Interior: "Today I abstained from voting on Representative Zinke because Oregonians need clarification on recent news reports that indicate he may be interested in moving the management of all the nation's forests into the Department of the Interior, including those currently managed by the U.S. Forest … Continue Reading

January 30, 2017

Wyden Statement on Introduction of Craft Beverage Modernization and Tax Reform Act

Washington, DC -- Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., issued the following statement on introduction of his Craft Beverage Modernization and Tax Reform Act: "Oregon's economy earns significant benefits from the jobs and small business growth created by our state's world-renowned craft beer, wine and spirits producers," said Wyden, the top Democrat on the Senate Finance Committee, which oversees excise taxes and alcohol regulations. "This bill would ensure these industries no longer face the unfair … Continue Reading

January 27, 2017

Wyden, Merkley, DeFazio, Blumenauer, Bonamici Say Hiring Freeze Raises Firefighting Concerns

Washington, D.C. - Sen. Ron Wyden, Sen. Jeff Merkley, Rep. Peter DeFazio, Earl Blumenauer and Rep. Suzanne Bonamici today told the White House that its action freezing federal employee hiring for 90 days raises significant questions about having enough seasonal workers to fight forest fires in Oregon and nationwide. "Without staff in place to prepare for the wildfire season, which is starting earlier and earlier every year due to climate change and years of severe drought conditions across … Continue Reading

January 26, 2017

Wyden, Merkley Seek Disaster Aid for Malheur County, Eastern Oregon

Washington - Senator Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today asked federal officials to begin the process that makes disaster aid available to farmers and businesses in Malheur County as well as other Eastern Oregon counties hard hit by severe winter weather since December. "This relief is desperately needed by these communities, to rebuild and get back to a normal routine," the senators wrote Michael Young, Acting Secretary of the federal Agriculture Department. In their letter seeking a disaster … Continue Reading

January 25, 2017

Wyden Statement on Reported Executive Orders Resuming CIA Torture Program and Banning Refugees

Washington, D.C. - Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., issued the following statement in response to reported executive orders opening the door to torture and creating a ban on refugees and immigrants from several majority Muslim nations. "What the Trump administration appears to be considering with regard to interrogation and detention would be illegal, contrary to our fundamental American values and profoundly destructive to our national security. These reported deliberations within the administration … Continue Reading

January 25, 2017

Oregon Lawmakers Introduce Mt. Hood Land Exchange Bill

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., and Representatives Greg Walden, R-Ore., and Earl Blumenauer, D-Ore., this week introduced legislation to protect and enhance Oregon's land conservation priorities on Mt. Hood. Wyden and Merkley introduced the Mt. Hood Cooper Spur Land Exchange Clarification Act in the Senate to help resolve a decades-long dispute over proposed land development on the northeast side of Mt. Hood. Walden and Blumenauer introduced the … Continue Reading

January 25, 2017

Wyden, Merkley, DeFazio, Blumenauer, Bonamici, Schrader Oppose EPA Grants Freeze

Washington, D.C. - Six Oregon lawmakers today told the White House that its decision to freeze grants administered by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) poses a serious threat to fundamental public health and environmental protections in Oregon and nationwide. "Americans deserve to know whether the EPA will protect their health and safety and defend their communities from air, land, and water contamination,'' said the letter to the president from Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley, and … Continue Reading

January 24, 2017

Statement on Appointment of Ajit Pai as FCC Chairman

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today issued the following statement on the president's choice of Ajit Pai as Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC): "The job of the FCC is to ensure a free and open internet and always put consumers first, not big corporations. Over the past years, the FCC has robustly looked out for Americans - not special interests. As with many appointments by Mr. Trump, I am concerned that as Chairman, Commissioner Pai will work for policies … Continue Reading

January 20, 2017

Senators Oppose Rushed Confirmation For CIA Nominee

WASHINGTON - Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., and Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., today said they oppose a rushed confirmation of Rep. Mike Pompeo to serve as director of the Director of Central Intelligence without senators having the opportunity to debate the nomination. "No CIA Director in history has ever been confirmed on Inauguration Day. The importance of the position of CIA Director, especially in these dangerous times, demands that the nomination be thoroughly … Continue Reading

January 19, 2017

Wyden, Merkley Urge Feds to Reconsider Deregulating Genetically Engineered Plant

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today wrote federal officials to express concerns about the deregulation of a genetically engineered plant that threatens Oregon's agriculture, recreation and grass seed industry. The senators' letter to Acting Agriculture Department Secretary Michael Scuse follows the announcement this week from the department's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service that it would deregulate Scotts Company's and Monsanto Company's ASR368 Creeping … Continue Reading

January 18, 2017

Wyden Announces ‘No’ Vote on Betsy DeVos to Head the Department of Education

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today announced he will vote against the nomination of Betsy DeVos to be the next secretary of the Department of Education. "A bedrock principle of America's public educational system is investing public money in schools meant to serve everyone, not siphoning off scarce taxpayer dollars to private or religious education. Unfortunately, the president-elect's choice for Education Secretary has indicated she supports an approach that flies in … Continue Reading

January 18, 2017

Wyden, Feinstein Ask CIA Director Brennan to Correct or Clarify Testimony About Accountability for CIA Torture Program

Washington, D.C. - Senators Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., requested that Central Intelligence Agency Director John Brennan publicly correct or clarify his testimony during the June 16, 2016 Senate Intelligence Committee hearing, in a letter released today. Read the full letter here. Sen. Feinstein was vice chair of the committee during the hearing, and Sen. Wyden is a senior Intelligence Committee member. The following exchange occurred during that … Continue Reading

January 17, 2017

Wyden to Oppose Pruitt for Environmental Protection Agency Administrator

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today went to the Senate floor to express his opposition to the nomination of Scott Pruitt to head the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). "Mr. Pruitt's career is defined by repeated attempts to weaken or eliminate health-based environmental standards, worker protections, air quality standards for toxic air pollutants, and limits on carbon emissions to take on the challenge of climate change," Wyden said. "These rollbacks would hurt … Continue Reading

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