Press Releases

February 25, 2015

Bipartisan Group of Senators Launches Whistleblower Protection Caucus

WASHINGTON - ‎To raise awareness of the need for adequate protections against retaliation for private sector and government employees who call attention to wrongdoing, a bipartisan group of senators today launched the Whistleblower Protection Caucus. The caucus will foster bipartisan discussion on legislative issues affecting the treatment of whistleblowers and serve as a clearinghouse for current information on whistleblower developments of interest in the Senate. It will also coordinate … Continue Reading

February 25, 2015

Senators introduce bipartisan bill to protect knife owners

Washington, D.C. - Today U.S. Senators Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., and Ron Wyden, D-Ore., introduced legislation to ensure that those traveling with a properly secured knife are not prosecuted under local or state laws which ban certain knives. "Americans who are transporting a pocket knife shouldn't have to worry that they will be arrested for just passing through," said Enzi. "This is not theoretical, but a real problem. It is almost impossible for a citizen to be fully aware of the thousands of … Continue Reading

February 20, 2015

Wyden: Oil Train Accidents Raise Red Flags about Safety of New Rail Cars

Washington, D.C. - Recent oil train accidents raise serious concerns about newer rail cars that carry crude oil in Oregon and across the country, Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., said today. Wyden urged the administration to take into account a series of accidents involving new cars as it finalizes oil train safety rules, in a letter to the White House budget office today. Wyden called on the Office of Management and Budget to consult with the National Transportation Safety Board and Department of … Continue Reading

February 13, 2015

Sen. Wyden Statement on Governor Kitzhaber’s Resignation

WASHINGTON - Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., issued the following statement after Gov. Kitzhaber announced he would resign: "Oregonians want government to focus on their needs rather than investigations and charges and counter-charges. Oregonians have a right to expect the highest ethical standards from their government, and today's announcement by Governor Kitzhaber acknowledges that reality. In the days ahead, we will refocus with our new Governor Kate Brown on the goal all Oregonians share - … Continue Reading

February 13, 2015

Oregon Senators Announce Restoration of Veterans Employment Program

Washington, DC - Oregon Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today announced more than $1.4 million for an Oregon National Guard program that helps servicemembers and veterans find jobs when they return home. When funding for the Joint Transition Assistance Program (JTAP) lapsed late last year, the Senators asked the National Guard Bureau to work with them to provide emergency resources. Today's announcement represents the fruit of the Senators' labor and is especially timely given that … Continue Reading

February 12, 2015

Wyden, Crapo Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Renew Safety Net for Rural Counties

Washington, D.C.- Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Sen. Mike Crapo, R-Idaho, today introduced a bipartisan bill to renew the Secure Rural Schools program, which supports schools, law-enforcement and roads in more than 700 rural counties across the country. "County payments are a lifeline for cash-strapped rural communities that are already facing shortfalls to pave roads, keep teachers in schools and firefighters on call," Wyden said. "This bipartisan bill keeps up the commitment the government … Continue Reading

February 12, 2015

Wyden Joins Bipartisan, Bicameral Group to Protect Online Privacy

WASHINGTON- Today, Senator Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) joined a bipartisan, bicameral group of legislators as cosponsor of a bill to modernize our nation's electronic privacy laws and bring protections against warrantless searches up to date with the technological realities of the 21st century. The "Electronic Communications Privacy Amendments Act of 2015" (ECPA) was submitted in the Senate by Senators Mike Lee (R-UT) and Patrick Leahy (D-VT). Representatives Kevin Yoder (R-KS) and Jared Polis (D-CO) … Continue Reading

February 11, 2015

Wyden: Oregon Cidermakers, Brewers, Vintners, and Distillers Would Benefit from Bills Heading to Senate Floor

Washington, D.C. - Oregon Sen. Ron Wyden said that the state's economy is well-positioned to benefit from two bipartisan bills passed today in the Senate Finance Committee. Wyden, the Finance Committee's top Democrat, said one of those two bills would help Oregon's growing cider industry by updating antiquated excise taxes. Those excise taxes are outdated because their current definition of hard cider sets alcohol and carbonation levels that are too low, unfairly triggering higher tax rates … Continue Reading

February 09, 2015

Wyden Lauds Proposed Wine Rules

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., said Monday that he is very encouraged by two significant developments that could have huge benefits for the wine industry in northeastern Oregon and southeastern Washington. The first of the two developments is the announcement today by the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) that would allow wines produced in "The Rocks District of Milton-Freewater" to state that they are produced in The Rocks, located within the internationally … Continue Reading

February 06, 2015

Wyden Demands Investigation into Alleged Government Mistreatment of Research Animals

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., called for an investigation into the possible mistreatment of animals over several decades at a U.S. Department of Agriculture research facility, in a letter today. Wyden sent the letter to the USDA following a recent report in the New York Times alleging the dangerous and inhumane treatment of animals at the U.S. Meat Animal Research Center in Clay Center, Nebraska. The report described surgical and breeding practices that caused pain and … Continue Reading

February 05, 2015

Oregon Senators Co-Sponsor Craft Brewing Bill

Washington, DC - Oregon Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today announced their co-sponsorship of a bill that would stimulate the growing craft brewing industry in Oregon and nationwide by reducing the excise tax on each barrel of beer brewed by small brewers. The bill, S. 375, the Small Brewer Reinvestment and Expanding Workforce Act, or Small BREW Act, would also change the threshold definition of a small brewer to better reflect modern production. A reduced excise tax and a more … Continue Reading

February 05, 2015

Wyden Launches Bipartisan Bill to Boost Commercial Unmanned Aircraft Research

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today joined Senator Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, in introducing a bill that would encourage continued research and development of the potential uses of commercial unmanned aerial systems (UAS) in Oregon and across the country. The bill, the Safe Skies for Unmanned Aircraft Act of 2015, would lift restrictions on unmanned aerial systems research that make it harder for universities and other research institutions to partner with private … Continue Reading

February 04, 2015

Wyden, Manchin, Cruz Introduce Bipartisan Legislation to Hold Pentagon Accountable for Financial Audit

Washington, D.C. -U.S. Senators Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., along with Senators Ted Cruz, R-Texas, and Rand Paul, R-Ky., introduced the Audit the Pentagon Act of 2015, which would establish strict penalties should the Department of Defense (DoD) not meet its legal obligation to be audit-ready by 2017. The Defense Department is the only federal agency that has never fully complied with financial management laws and currently remains on the Government Accountability's Office … Continue Reading

February 04, 2015

Wyden Praises Wheeler for net neutrality proposal that will “Save the Internet”

Washington, D.C. - Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., praised Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler's proposal to protect the freedom to compete online by reclassifying broadband under Title II of the Telecommunications Act of 1996: "Millions of American small businesses, consumers and innovators spoke and Chairman Wheeler listened. Without the open Internet, start-ups will never leave the garage," Wyden said. "The FCC should adopt this proposal and ensure that monopolies are never … Continue Reading

February 03, 2015

Wyden Praises Senate Passage of Bill Helping Veterans At Risk of Suicide

Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today released the following statement after the Senate unanimously approved the Clay Hunt Suicide Prevention for American Veterans Act: "I was proud to cosponsor and to vote for this bipartisan bill, which I'm convinced will save lives in Oregon and across the country," Wyden said. "Today the Senate sent a strong message that more must be done to reach veterans at risk of suicide. Veterans endure physical and emotional trauma in service to our nation and we have a … Continue Reading

February 03, 2015

Wyden Statement on Intelligence Reform Report: ‘Much More Work to Be Done’

Washington, D.C. - Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., released the following statement on the "Signals Intelligence Reform Report" by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, which oversees US intelligence activities, including the mass surveillance of Americans. "My first impression on reading this report is it's hard to see much 'there' there. When it comes to reforming intelligence programs and protecting Americans' privacy, there is much, much more work to be done," Wyden said. "Most … Continue Reading

January 28, 2015

Wyden Joins Senate Democrats in Effort to Protect Consumers from Unwanted Telemarketing Calls

Washington, D.C. - More than twenty years ago, the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) was passed to protect consumers from unsolicited and intrusive telephone calls from telemarketers while families were eating meals together or parents were helping children with homework. Today, with efforts underway by various industries to weaken TCPA and allow auto-dialers to call consumers' mobile devices, Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) and 12 Senate Democrats joined in a letter calling on the … Continue Reading

January 26, 2015

Wyden Statement on Senate Republican Leaders Cutting off Keystone Debate

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., issued the following statement today after Senate Republican leaders cut off debate on the Keystone XL bill, without allowing votes or debate on dozens of amendments. Wyden is a strong opponent of the Keystone XL pipeline and has voted against it every time the Senate has considered it. "The number of votes the U.S. Senate has taken this year is not an indicator of the quality of those votes nor of the debate associated with those votes. I am … Continue Reading

January 26, 2015

Oregon Receives Nearly $27 Million to Put Roofs Over Oregonians’ Heads

Washington, DC - Oregon Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today praised the announcement of federal funding for more than 130 programs across the state that seek to house people who are experiencing homelessness. "When people can't afford a roof over their head, they suffer and the entire community suffers," Senator Wyden said. "Too many folks are still suffering the aftereffects of the recession, making it more important than ever to pull together as a compassionate nation to house the … Continue Reading

January 22, 2015

Wyden Secures Bipartisan Senate Majority for Closing Tar Sands Tax Loophole

Washington, D.C. - Led by U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., an overwhelming bipartisan majority of U.S. Senate, including dozens of Republicans, today voted to close a tax loophole that gives millions of dollars to tar sands oil producers and leaves American taxpayers on the hook if that oil spills. "It is very significant that more than 70 senators voted for a nonbinding resolution to close an outlandish tax loophole that favors Canadian tar sands producers over American oil and American … Continue Reading

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