Press Releases

June 07, 2007

Smith and Wyden Set Agenda for 110th Congress

Washington, D.C. - Oregon Senators Gordon Smith and Ron Wyden unveiled their sixth joint legislative agenda today showing their firm commitment to advancing a bipartisan agenda for Oregon. The agenda sets out to preserve the county payments safety net, improve access to health insurance, and help build Oregon's economy. The agenda also addresses education, hunger, the Internet and funding for transportation projects. "We're probably the only two home state Senators not arguing with each … Continue Reading

June 04, 2007

Wyden Asks BPA to Delay Long-Term Contract Decision Until Residential Exchange Deal is Reached

Washington, D.C. - As thousands of Oregonians brace for significantly higher utility bills this month, U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) sent a letter to the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) today urging BPA to assume the role of an "honest broker" and to look for legally sufficient ways to restore the Residential Exchange benefits as soon as possible. Since 1980, the Residential Exchange program has enabled residents and small farm utility customers in Oregon to share the benefits of BPA's … Continue Reading

June 04, 2007

Wyden Charges Administration with: "Buying nothing but higher gas prices for American families"

Washington, D.C. - As American gasoline prices hit record highs, Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) is questioning the timing of the Bush Administration's announcement that it will begin transporting 9.2 million barrels of Royalty In Kind crude oil to fill the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR). Slated to begin July 1, 2007, this would be the first installment of a 27 million barrel transfer to the SPR. In a letter to President Bush, Wyden expressed concern with the Administration's decision to … Continue Reading

May 29, 2007

Wyden Welcomes Obama Health Care Plan

Portland - I am very pleased that Senator Obama (D-IL) has come forward with a proposal to fix the nation's broken health care system and that his plan is based on some of the core principles contained in the bipartisan Healthy Americans Act. I look forward to seeing the details.Like the Healthy Americans Act, the Obama plan appears to ensure that every American has quality, affordable private health coverage similar to what Members of Congress have. Both plans also emphasize prevention and … Continue Reading

May 22, 2007

Wyden, Bennett, Baird and Emerson Propose First Bipartisan, Comprehensive Bill in More than a Decade to Guarantee Health Coverage for All Americans

Washington, DC - Pointing to growing support in Congress to work now to fix America's health care system, U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Bob Bennett (R-UT) and U.S. Reps. Brian Baird (D-WA) and Jo Ann Emerson (R-MO) today announced they are proposing the first bipartisan, comprehensive health care reform bill in more than a decade to guarantee health coverage for all Americans.Wyden, Bennett, Baird and Emerson said the bipartisan response to the Healthy Americans Act (HAA), which Wyden … Continue Reading

May 22, 2007

Wyden Calls for Accountability at Hanford Nuclear Waste Treatment Plant

Washington, D.C. - Citing a recent report by the Inspector General of the Department of Energy -- which stated that the control system intended for use at the Nuclear Waste Treatment Plant at Hanford "does not meet the stringent procedures, plans, specifications, or work practices associated with nuclear quality standards" -- U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) sent a letter to Secretary Samuel Bodman today asking what actions the Department will be taking in response to the Inspector General's … Continue Reading

May 22, 2007

Wyden to Hold Interior Nominee Until Ethics Concerns are Addressed

Washington, D.C. - Citing serious ethics transgressions committed by a high-ranking Interior Department official, Julie MacDonald, U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) announced today that he will place a hold on Senate confirmation of Lyle Laverty, the President's nominee for Assistant Interior Secretary for Fish, Wildlife and Parks, until he is satisfied that such transgressions will not happen again.In his letter to Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne (see below), Wyden references a recent report … Continue Reading

May 22, 2007

Senators Ask for Answers as Report Labels Sudan a "Strong Partner in the War on Terror"

Washington, DC - In a letter to Director of National Intelligence, Michael McConnell, members of the U.S. Senate Select Committee on Intelligence raised concerns about the State Department's recent characterization of the Sudanese government as a "strong partner in the War on Terror." Citing the state-sponsored genocide that has killed hundreds of thousands of people in the Darfur region of Sudan, U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR), Russ Feingold (D-WI), Olympia Snowe (R-ME) and Sheldon … Continue Reading

May 22, 2007

Wyden, Bennett, Baird Join CEOs of Top U.S. Companies to Push for Health Care Reform

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Bob Bennett (R-UT) and U.S. Rep. Brian Baird (D-WA) today joined forces with the CEOs of several of the nation's largest companies to announce that the CEOs have formed a coalition to push for health care reform before the end of the 110th Congress.Last week, the Healthy Americans Act, which reflects many of the same goals as the CEOs announced today, picked up steam in Congress as Bennett, a senior member of the Republican leadership, … Continue Reading

May 22, 2007

Wyden Follows up on Veterans' Concerns

Washington, DC - Following a series of meetings with Oregon veterans and their families, veterans' organizations and VA officials during the April Congressional recess, U.S. Senator Ron Wyden joined several colleagues today in introducing The Rural Veterans Healthcare Improvement Act of 2007, which addresses many of the concerns Wyden heard in his meetings."Too many Oregon veterans, especially in rural parts of our state, are having trouble accessing the health care they were promised when … Continue Reading

May 22, 2007

Wyden Calls for Mandated Redeployment of U.S. Troops from Iraq

Washington, DC - Calling for the redeployment of American forces in Iraq, U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) announced his support today for the Feingold-Reid amendment, which would require the President to withdraw U.S. troops from Iraq by March 31, 2008."For more than four years, the Bush administration has been telling the American people that conditions in Iraq would change. They have, but for the worse. Today it is up to Congress to let the President and his administration know that using … Continue Reading

May 22, 2007

Wyden, Brownback Propose Bill to Keep Internet Radio in Play

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Sam Brownback (R-KS) today proposed legislation to keep Internet radio alive by vacating a Copyright Royalty Board (CRB) decision that could increase Internet radio sound recording royalties by 300 percent to 1,200 percent.According to an Arbitron and Edison Media Research, 52 million people listened to Internet radio at least once a month in 2006. Bridge Ratings and Research predicts that number will double within three years and reach … Continue Reading

May 22, 2007

Senators: Provision Seeks to Help Colleges, High Schools Buy Nanotechnology Equipment through Grants

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR), John Kerry (D-MA), Gordon Smith (R-OR) and Mark Pryor (D-AR) have successfully added a provision to U.S. competitiveness legislation to authorize the use of National Science Foundation grant funds to acquire nanotechnology equipment and software designed for teaching students about nanotechnology in the classroom."I have seen the nanotechnology equipment that folks will be able to use these funds to purchase, and it will help attract talented … Continue Reading

May 22, 2007

Wyden Statement on New Health System Comparisons Report by the Commonweal Fund

Washington, D.C. - "This new report confirms what I hear from folks at town hall meetings all across Oregon: they want access to quality health care that can't be taken away, even if they lose or change their job," said U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, a member of the Senate Finance Committee. "We have the best health care professionals in the world. We spend enough money on health care. We just don't spend it in the right places. Senator Bob Bennett (R-UT) and I and two of our House colleagues have … Continue Reading

May 22, 2007

Emerald Express to Receive Funding a Year Ahead of Schedule

Washington, D.C. - Eugene will receive $14.8 million in funding one-year ahead of schedule for the Emerald Express expansion, Oregon Senators Gordon Smith and Ron Wyden noted today. The Senators are top proponents for funding the project, which will create a new hybrid-electric bus line between Eugene and Springfield. "The new line will boost job opportunities and bring communities closer together," Senator Smith said. "Project planers are smartly buying hybrid-electric busses, showing … Continue Reading

May 22, 2007

Wyden Hails Decision to Expand Health Care to Vets in Eastern Oregon through New Clinic in La Grande

Portland - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) today applauded the decision by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to establish a Community Based Outpatient Clinic for veterans in La Grande.Wyden, who has lobbied hard for a La Grande clinic, said that according to preliminary projections his office has received from the Walla Walla, Washington, VA Medical Center (VAMC) planning staff, approximately 1,570 Eastern Oregon veterans will be able to receive care at the new La Grande outpatient … Continue Reading

April 25, 2007

Wyden Applauds ITC Investigation into Possible Hardwood Plywood Abuses

Washington, DC - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) today announced that the U.S International Trade Commission (ITC) has formally opened an investigation "into the competitive conditions affecting the U.S. wood flooring and hardwood plywood industries."Wyden, a member of the Senate Finance Committee, had requested that Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus request the investigation by the ITC. Baucus did so in a February 28, 2007, letter. The ITC's report is due by June 6, 2008.Nearly … Continue Reading

April 25, 2007

Dorgan, Wyden Call for GSA Administrator to Resign

Washington, D.C. - As evidence of serious alleged ethics and possibly legal violations at the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) continue to mount, U.S. Senators Byron Dorgan (D-ND) and Ron Wyden (D-OR) today called for the resignation or firing of GSA Administrator Lurita Doan. Doan has held the top GSA job since May 31, 2006, and has come under fire from bipartisan congressional critics.Wyden said two incidents have troubled him the most: Doan's efforts to undermine the Office of … Continue Reading

April 25, 2007

Smith-Wyden Look at Options to Cover the Uninsured

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Gordon H. Smith (R-OR) and Ron Wyden (D-OR) reintroduced legislation today that would improve access to health insurance for uninsured Americans and those with catastrophic health care costs. The measure, the Catastrophic Health Coverage Promotion Act, would create at least four state-based pilot projects that target the uninsured and individuals with catastrophic health care costs. Under the legislation, Oregon is guaranteed to be awarded at least one of the … Continue Reading

April 25, 2007

Wyden Calls Administration Plan to Abandon Tax Reform "Bad Judgment"

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, a member of the Senate Finance Committee, today said the Bush Administration was turning its back on millions of American taxpayers just one day after Tax Day in announcing it was abandoning much-needed reform of the nation's confusing and special-interest heavy tax code. News of the Administration's decision to walk away from tax reform came during today's Senate Finance Committee hearing at which U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson - responding … Continue Reading

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