Press Releases

September 19, 2006

Bipartisan Bill Would Curb Patriot Act Powers

Washington, DC U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) joined Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) today to introduce the bipartisan Protecting the Rights of Individuals Act, which will define and narrow the new powers given to government agencies by the USA Patriot Act, passed by the 107th Congress in the immediate aftermath of the September 11 attacks.Right now, the Executive Branch has greater powers to pursue potential enemies to the U.S. than at any time since World War II powers granted in the days … Continue Reading

September 19, 2006

Sweeping Mount Hood Protections Proposed

Washington, DC As the nation celebrates the bicentennial of the Lewis and Clark expedition this year, U.S. Senator Ron Wyden today called for designating 160,000 acres of additional wilderness along the expeditions path in the Columbia River Gorge and in areas surrounding Mount Hood, as well as designating four river segments under the Wild and Scenic River System. Wyden released details of his plan and announced his intentions for the "Lewis and Clark Mount Hood Wilderness Act of 2004" on … Continue Reading

September 19, 2006

Wyden, Dorgan Win Approval of Amendment to End Outsourcing of Iraq Reconstruction on Oversight

Washington, DC - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Byron Dorgan (D-N.D.) today won Senate approval of an amendment prohibiting the renewal of any current contract outsourcing the oversight of Iraq reconstruction to non-governmental entities. The amendment, accepted for inclusion in the Department of Defense reauthorization bill, also prohibits future private oversight contracts unless the U.S. government is entirely unable provide personnel to perform direct oversight, and prohibits the … Continue Reading

September 19, 2006

Wyden Resolution on President to Push OPEC, Aid Gasoline Consumers

Washington, DC - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) today introduced a Senate resolution calling on President Bush to pressure OPEC nations to increase oil production to help reduce gasoline prices in the United States. The Wyden resolution mirrors legislation authored in 2000 by the current U.S. Energy Department secretary, then-U.S. Senator Spencer Abraham (R-Mich.), and the current U.S. Attorney General, then-U.S. Senator John Ashcroft (R-Mo.), calling on the Clinton administration to pressure … Continue Reading

September 19, 2006

Wyden Calls on President Bush to Deliver Promised Education Funds

Washington, DC - As he continues statewide listening sessions on Federal education policy during visits to Redmond, Salem and Pendleton this week, U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) today called on President Bush to "reverse course" on his decision to only partially fund the "No Child Left Behind" law, after a White House announcement indicated that the largest single program in the law will be … Continue Reading

September 19, 2006

Wyden, Snowe "MEND" Act Will Enhance Drug Coverage Under New Medicare Law, Confront Spiraling Costs

WASHINGTON, DC - U.S. Senators Olympia Snowe (R-ME) and Ron Wyden (D-OR) announced the bipartisan Medicare Enhancement for Needed Drugs Act (MEND Act) today, legislation that would strengthen the drug coverage offered to seniors under the recently enacted Medicare prescription drug benefit. The MEND Act directly addresses the crisis of skyrocketing drug costs; it grants the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) the specific authority to negotiate lower prices for … Continue Reading

September 19, 2006

Wyden, Smith Secure $2.75 Million for Oregon Health, Education and Job Training Programs

Washington, DC - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Gordon Smith (R-Ore.) today announced $2.75 million in Federal funding for Oregon health and human services programs. These funds are included in the Fiscal Year 2004 omnibus funding measure that will now be signed into law by the president. The bill also requires a National Institutes of Health (NIH) study to consider the affordability of prescription drugs to American consumers when taxpayer-funded drug technologies are transferred to the … Continue Reading

September 19, 2006

New government report criticizes current wildfire suppression budget practices

Washington, DC U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR), Larry Craig (R-ID) and several colleagues today released a U.S. General Accounting Office (GAO) report blasting current wildfire suppression budget practices. The report, commissioned by Wyden, Craig and other members of Congress, identifies problems created by the practice of transferring funding from one project to another within agencies when those agencies have insufficient budgets for fighting wildfires. For the last two years, Federal … Continue Reading

June 23, 2006

Wyden, Smith Win Substantial Funds for Oregon Agriculture Projects

Washington, DC U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Gordon Smith (R-Ore.) today announced that Oregon should receive substantial funds for agricultural projects under the Senates agriculture appropriations legislation. Much of the funding will support research at Oregon State University, known as a regional leader in the study of agriculture. The Senate Appropriations Committee approved the bill this week; the legislation now moves to the full Senate for consideration.Research and … Continue Reading

June 16, 2006

U.S. Senate accepts Wyden resolution calling forcomprehensive schedule to destroy chemical weapons

Washington, D.C. A resolution cosponsored by U.S. Senator Ron Wyden urging the Secretary of Defense to prepare a comprehensive schedule for safely destroying the United States chemical weapons stockpiles and calling for annual reports to Congress on the progress of that effort has been included in the Department of Defense authorization bill currently being debated on the floor of the U.S. Senate. The resolution, accepted unanimously into the Department of Defense authorization bill last … Continue Reading

June 15, 2006

Wyden gets disaster declaration forsalmon fishermen into Magnuson-Stevens

Washington, DC U.S. Senator Ron Wyden today removed his hold on the major piece of fisheries management legislation before the Congress (the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Reauthorization Act of 2005) after his amendment making salmon fishermen eligible for disaster assistance was added to the bill; the legislation is expected to pass the U.S. Senate tonight or early tomorrow.After waiting months for a disaster declaration from the Secretary of Commerce, our salmon … Continue Reading

June 06, 2006

Wyden blocks major fisheries legislation

Washington, DC Concerned that Oregon salmon fishermen and their communities are unnecessarily suffering under a steeply curtailed salmon fishery, U.S. Senator Ron Wyden today blocked (held) the major piece of fisheries management legislation moving through the Congress until the Senate considers steps to help fishermen in Oregon survive this disastrous fishing season.Weve known for months that this was going to be a bad season for our salmon fishermen, but the Secretary of Commerce has done … Continue Reading

May 26, 2006

Wyden Wins Approval of Two Key Measures in Intelligence Funding Bill

Washington, DC - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), a member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, today announced that the FY 2007 Intelligence Authorization legislation approved by the Committee includes two key provisions that would strengthen U.S. intelligence efforts and improve accountability over intelligence activities. The first Wyden provision will increase the criminal penalties for knowingly and intentionally revealing the identity of a covert intelligence agent from 5-10 … Continue Reading

May 26, 2006

Wyden blocks Interior Department nomineeover funding for rural schools and roads

Washington, DC U.S. Senator Ron Wyden today placed a hold on the nomination of David Bernhardt to become Solicitor for the Department of the Interior and vowed to block future Administration nominees until there is an acceptable way to fully fund county payments. The county payments law provides vital funding for rural schools, roads and county services across the nation; Oregon counties will receive $1.6 billion in county payments funding over the life of the original bill, which expires … Continue Reading

May 16, 2006

Wyden offers resolution calling for comprehensiveschedule to destroy chemical weapons stockpiles

WASHINGTON, D.C. Following announcements by the Department of Defense that the U.S. would not meet its 2007 treaty deadline for the destruction of its chemical weapons or the five-year extension provided under the Chemical Weapons Convention treaty U.S. Senator Ron Wyden has cosponsored a resolution urging the Secretary of Defense to prepare a comprehensive schedule for safely destroying the United States chemical weapons stockpiles; the resolution also calls for annual reports to Congress … Continue Reading

May 11, 2006

Final tax legislation uses proposed rural schools fundingto provide more tax cuts to the wealthy

Washington, DC A major tax bill expected to be approved by Congress this week uses a funding provision proposed by U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Max Baucus (D-Mont.) as a full-funding source for the rural county payments bill to instead provide tax cuts for the wealthy. To date, the Senators proposal has been the only full-funding proposal for county payments on Capitol Hill. Wyden will vote against the tax bill in the Senate, citing the use of the county payments funding provision as well as … Continue Reading

May 05, 2006

Wyden Statement on Resignation of Porter Goss

Washington, DC - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) today released the following statement on the resignation of CIA Director Porter Goss:"I appreciate the hard work of the Director while leading the CIA. When I voted against his nomination two years ago, it was because of my reservations about his commitment to making America as safe as it needs to be. My concerns were never resolved."During his tenure, Mr. Goss resisted efforts to lift the veil of secrecy around the intelligence failures of … Continue Reading

April 27, 2006

Wyden, Smith Prepare $81 Million Support Packagefor Salmon Fisherman

Washington, DC U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Gordon Smith (R-OR) have introduced legislation that would provide $81 million in emergency disaster assistance for Oregon and California fishermen impacted by restrictions placed on salmon fishing."Fishermen on Oregons coast are facing a bleak salmon season this year, and thats on top of a bad season last year. Doing nothing just isnt an option, Wyden said. This emergency assistance will address the immediate financial needs of our coastal … Continue Reading

April 04, 2006

Oregon Legislators Introduce Bill to Conserve Water,Better Serve Farmers and Ranchers

WASHINGTON, DC - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Gordon Smith (R-OR) and Congressman Greg Walden (R-OR) have introduced legislation to allow the North Unit Irrigation District located in Jefferson County to participate in conservation projects funded by the State of Oregon. Some of the conserved water will be returned to instream flows on the Deschutes River to support fish and wildlife. The district will also have the option of distributing a portion of the conserved water to farmers and … Continue Reading

March 30, 2006

Wyden Cosponsors Legislation to Fully Fund County Payments Law

Washington, DC - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) today announced he is cosponsoring legislation introduced by U.S Senator Max Baucus (D-Mont.) that will fully fund a reauthorization of the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self Determination Act of 2000, commonly known as the county payments law, by closing a tax loophole that allows government contractors to avoid their tax obligations. In 2005 Wyden, along with U.S. Senator Larry Craig (R-Idaho), introduced a bill to reauthorize the county … Continue Reading

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