Press Releases

March 13, 2020

Wyden, Merkley, Blumenauer, DeFazio, Bonamici Request Urgently Needed Federal COVID-19 Aid for Oregon

Washington, DC - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley joined with U.S. Reps. Earl Blumenauer, Peter DeFazio and Suzanne Bonamici in a letter to Vice President Pence seeking urgently needed COVID-19 aid for Oregon, including surgical masks, respirators, ventilators and more. The Oregon lawmakers' letter sent late Thursday noted that Governor Brown has declared a state of emergency in Oregon in response to COVID-19, and that the state has growing and unmet needs from previous state requests. … Continue Reading


March 13, 2020

Wyden Introduces Bill to Expand Free Coronavirus Testing

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden - along with Sens. Tina Smith (D-Minn.) Gary Peters (D-Mich.), Democratic Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), and Patty Murray (D-Wash.) -led a number of their Democratic Senate colleagues in introducing legislation that would expand free tests to confirm coronavirus (COVID-19) infections. "Adequate testing for COVID-19 is a critical step to stem the tide of the pandemic," Wyden said. "Beyond increasing the availability of the test, it needs to be … Continue Reading


March 12, 2020

Wyden Statement on Claims The President Can Spy on Americans Without Congressional Approval

U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., a senior member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, issued the following statement following Intelligence Committee Chairman Richard Burr's claim that the president can spy on Americans without Congressional approval, even if Section 215 of the PATRIOT Act expires: "On the floor of the U.S. Senate today, Intelligence Committee Chairman Burr said that the president can disregard the FISA law altogether and spy on Americans with no judicial or congressional … Continue Reading


March 12, 2020

Wyden Statement on Confirmation of Another Republican FERC Nominee

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., released the following statement on the Senate confirmation of James P. Danly to be a member of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC): "The confirmation of Danly to the FERC creates a wholly unbalanced Commission and such an unbalanced and partisan Commission threatens the validity of its decisions by defying the commonsense meaning of a bipartisan commission. I question the legitimacy of such a Commission in violation of its … Continue Reading


March 12, 2020

Three Oregon Town Halls Postponed

Portland - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden's town halls that had been scheduled for this weekend in Baker, Union and Gilliam counties are postponed in the interest of minimizing potential health risks to Oregonians from COVID-19. At this time, Wyden said it is prudent to be proactive and postpone these town halls until there are clear-cut public health guidelines that an open-to-all public meeting poses no unusual health risk for Oregonians. In fulfillment of his pledge to hold at least one town hall … Continue Reading


March 12, 2020

Wyden, Merkley Introduce Legislation to Permanently Fund the Land and Water Conservation Fund

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley this week joined a bipartisan group of their colleagues to introduce landmark legislation to permanently and fully fund the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) and address the nearly $12 billion maintenance backlog in our national parks and other land management agencies. Thanks to the broad bipartisan coalition supporting the Great American Outdoors Act the bill is expected to get White House approval, if passed. "LWCF is … Continue Reading


March 11, 2020

Wyden, Senate Democratic Leaders Announce Targeted New Proposal To Help States With Coronavirus Outbreaks

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden and Senate Democratic Leaders today announced a new targeted economic and community relief proposal to help communities and individuals deal with the impacts of the coronavirus outbreak. The proposal is based on input from Governors, policy experts and state and local officials about what is needed to help workers, their families and the communities they live in to manage the economic disruption and services crisis at the local level in both the … Continue Reading


March 11, 2020

Merkley, Wyden, Colleagues Press Trump on Coronavirus Disaster Declaration

Washington, D.C.-Oregon's Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden, along with dozens of their Senate colleagues, today sent a letter to President Trump urging the president to immediately consider any coronavirus-related disaster declaration requests. Presidential disaster declarations would enable affected states to tap into the $42.6 billion currently available in the Disaster Relief Fund (DRF) in their efforts to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 and protect public health. The Senators urged … Continue Reading


March 11, 2020

Wyden Introduces Bill to Protect Voters and Elections Against COVID-19 Risks by Mandating Emergency Vote-By-Mail

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today introduced a bill to address the risks to American voters and elections posed by the coronavirus (COVID-19), and other outbreaks of infectious diseases or natural disasters. If 25 percent of states declare a state of emergency related to COVID-19, another infectious disease or natural disaster, the Resilient Elections During Quarantines and Natural Disasters Act of 2020 would require all states to offer an option for voters to mail in … Continue Reading


March 10, 2020

Wyden Statement on House FISA Extension Bill

U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today released the following statement regarding the latest FISA extension bill under consideration in the U.S. House: "The FISA bill posted by the House Rules Committee includes provisions sought by reformers, but falls far short of the meaningful protections for Americans' rights that members from both parties have demanded. It codifies prohibitions on two collection activities that the government had already suspended: the massive and ineffective call detail … Continue Reading


March 10, 2020

Wyden, Schumer, Murray Demand Answers On The Alarming Lack Of Access To Coronavirus Testing

Washington, D.C. - Senate Finance Committee Ranking Member Ron Wyden (D-OR), Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), and Senate HELP Committee Ranking Member Patty Murray (D-WA) sent a letter today to Vice President Pence regarding the mass confusion and lack of clarity around the availability of coronavirus testing and out-of-pocket costs associated with getting tests and treatment. The letter from Senators Wyden, Schumer and Murray demands the Trump administration answer essential … Continue Reading


March 10, 2020

Wyden, Merkley Demand Answers From the FCC on Move Limiting Access to Resources to Expand Rural Broadband

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today denounced the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) decision to move forward with a recently adopted rule that would limit the federal resources available to expand broadband in rural areas. The rule would make areas that have received state-run broadband program funding or funding from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) ReConnect program ineligible for new federal investment for broadband deployment … Continue Reading


March 10, 2020

Merkley, Wyden, Walden Push for Emergency Aid for Flood-Stricken Eastern Oregon

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden, with Congressman Greg Walden (R-OR-5), are pushing the Trump administration for an expedited review of the "presidential major disaster declaration" that Oregon Governor Kate Brown requested for three Oregon counties and a tribal nation that suffered severe damage from historic flooding in February. Officials estimate damages to public and individual property amount to more than $30 million. The lawmakers also emphasized … Continue Reading


March 05, 2020

Merkley, Wyden Join Bipartisan Group of Senators in Urging Vice President Pence to Ensure Coronavirus Resources for Tribes and Urban Native Communities

WASHINGTON, DC - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden joined a bipartisan group of 25 senators in writing to Vice President Mike Pence requesting the administration meaningfully engage with Native communities and Tribal leaders on their response to the 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19). The senators sent the letter following congressional passage of a coronavirus emergency supplemental appropriations bill that includes $40 million for Tribes, Tribal organizations and Urban Indian … Continue Reading


March 05, 2020

Merkley, Wyden Announce Senate Passage of Emergency Coronavirus Funding Bill

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden today announced the Senate passage of a bipartisan, bicameral coronavirus emergency funding bill, which will provide $8.3 billion in new funding to respond to the COVID-19 outbreak. "In the face of this public health crisis, we need good information, good science, and the right tools in the right hands to limit the virus's spread and keep people safe," said Merkley. "It's important that members of Congress of both parties … Continue Reading


March 05, 2020

Wyden and Khanna Introduce Bill to Protect Whistleblowers, Ensure Journalists Aren’t Targeted for Publishing Classified Information

Washington, D.C. - As the Trump-Barr Justice Department increasingly targets whistleblowers and political enemies, Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Rep. Ro Khanna, D-Calif., today introduced the Espionage Act Reform Act to rewrite the hundred-year-old law governing when reporters and whistleblowers can be prosecuted for discussing government secrets. The Wyden-Khanna legislation reaffirms First Amendment protections for journalists who publish classified information, and ensures whistleblowers can … Continue Reading


March 04, 2020

Wyden Calls on Census Bureau to Address Impact of Coronavirus on 2020 Census

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden today urged the U.S. Census Bureau to put a plan in place to ensure that the expanding coronavirus outbreak doesn't hurt the accuracy of the 2020 Census, and to make sure the health of census takers is protected. In the letter to Census Bureau Director Steven Dillingham, Wyden and 16 other senators also requested a Senate briefing on the status of the census no later than March 27, 2020. "An accurate and comprehensive census is fundamental to our … Continue Reading


March 04, 2020

Oregon Officials to Hold Flood Recovery Meeting in Pendleton

Portland - All Oregonians hit by the recent floods that devastated Umatilla County are invited to a March 10 meeting with federal, tribal, county, city and non-profit officials who will provide information and answer community questions about recovering from the disaster. The meeting from 5 pm to 7:30 pm on Tuesday, March 10 at the Pendleton Convention Center (1601 Westgate) was coordinated by U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley, Gov. Kate Brown and U.S. Rep. Greg Walden. "I know … Continue Reading


March 04, 2020

Wyden, Merkley Support Baker City Watershed Road Repairs

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today urged federal officials to improve emergency response and access to public lands by fixing the only accessible route through the fire-prone Baker City watershed. The Oregon senators' letter to U.S. Forest Service Chief Vicki Christiansen comes in support of Wallowa-Whitman National Forest officials' request for capital improvement project funds to repair the Marble Creek Pass Road. Wyden and Merkley noted in their letter that the … Continue Reading


March 03, 2020

Wyden Presses DOE Secretary on Agency’s Failure to Prioritize Hanford Cleanup

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today pressed U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Secretary Dan Brouillette on the agency's failure to prioritize cleaning up the Hanford site and protecting workers and surrounding communities from contamination. In a hearing before the U.S. Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee on Donald Trump's FY2021 budget, Wyden cited a recent Government Accountability Office (GAO) report that found significant problems with the way contaminated … Continue Reading

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