Press Releases

August 01, 2018

Wyden, Merkley Introduce Legislation to Ensure LGBTQ Americans are Counted in Census

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today introduced legislation that would require the U.S. Census Bureau to ensure the approximately 10 million Americans who identify as LGBTQ are properly counted in Census data collection. "Despite the progress our country has made, LGBTQ Americans are still facing discrimination in many aspects of their lives, including employment, housing and the justice system," Wyden said. "While the Trump administration continues to … Continue Reading


August 01, 2018

Wyden, Merkley Announce Nearly $9 Million in Housing Aid for Oregon

Washington, D.C. - Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today announced that Clackamas and Washington counties as well as the cities of Beaverton and Hillsboro will receive nearly $9 million in federal grants for housing assistance. The grants are aimed at providing help for low- and moderate-income people, assisting people trying to find permanent housing after experiencing homelessness and expanding the housing supply for low-income families. "Increasing housing prices have walloped … Continue Reading


July 31, 2018

Wyden, Nadler, Coons, Markey, Booker Ask GAO to Study Commercial and Government Use of Facial Recognition

Washington, D.C. -Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and House Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., with Sens. Chris Coons, D-Del., Ed Markey, D-Mass., and Cory Booker, D-N.J., today asked the Government Accountability Office to study both commercial and government use of facial recognition to determine the potential market, uses, and possible abuses of the technology. "Given the recent advances in commercial facial recognition technology - and its expanded use by state, local, and … Continue Reading


July 27, 2018

Wyden, Merkley, Brown Again Seek Federal Wildfire Aid for Oregon Farmers

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley and Gov. Kate Brown today asked federal officials to make some of the $12 billion promised American farmers in trade war relief also available to Oregon farmers devastated by recent wildfires. The letter from Wyden, Merkley and Brown to Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue notes their request follows one they made last week asking Perdue to provide emergency assistance for Oregon farmers whose crops have been decimated by this summer's … Continue Reading


July 27, 2018

Wyden, Booker, Markey Question 39 Federal Law-Enforcement Agencies About Facial Recognition Policies

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., Cory Booker, D-N.J., and Ed Markey, D-Mass., today sought details from 39 federal law-enforcement agencies about their use facial recognition technology, and what policies, if any, they have put in place to prevent abuse and misuse. "As [facial recognition] technologies have increased in availability and accuracy, and decreased in cost, we understand that as a law enforcement tool this technology would appear attractive," the senators wrote. … Continue Reading


July 26, 2018

Wyden, Blumenthal, Warren and Whitehouse Question Participants in 2015 NRA Delegation to Moscow

WASHINGTON - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., and Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., today requested information from reported participants in a 2015 delegation to Moscow arranged by the National Rifle Association. Maria Butina, who was recently charged by the Department of Justice with being a covert Russian agent, participated in the delegation and reportedly admitted funding at least portions of the trip. The senators wrote to … Continue Reading


July 26, 2018

Wyden, Merkley Call for Investigation of Justice Department Role in “Zero Tolerance” Immigration Policy

Washington, D.C.- Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today urged an investigation into the federal Department of Justice's role in the creation and implementation of the Trump Administration's "zero-tolerance" immigration policy. The Oregon senators joined U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) and 28 other senators in writing DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz to request his office conduct its own review given the role DOJ played in the policy's creation and implementation. "In … Continue Reading


July 26, 2018

Wyden, Merkley Introduce Bill to Overturn Rule Protecting Dark Money Donors

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today introduced legislation that would overturn a new controversial Treasury Department rule exempting nonprofit organizations from disclosing donor information The Spotlight Act would reverse the Treasury Department's decision that allows non-profit organization who engage in political activity to avoid disclosing certain donor information to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The Spotlight Act also requires these organizations to … Continue Reading


July 26, 2018

Wyden Pushes to Boost Women-Owned Businesses, Increase Access to Affordable Housing

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today filed two pieces of legislation that would boost opportunities for women and minority entrepreneurs to grow their businesses, and increase access to affordable housing for low-income families. One of Wyden's amendments to the Senate spending bill would require financial institutions to provide data to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) on lending to women and minority-owned businesses. That would help close the lending gap … Continue Reading


July 26, 2018

Wyden, Merkley Praise Eastern Oregon Forest Stewardship

Washington, D.C. - Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today encouraged federal officials to build upon the proven job and economic gains from the forest stewardship contract in the Malheur National Forest to create similar successes elsewhere in rural Oregon and nationwide. A long-term stewardship contract lets the government design projects that focus less on short-term economic gains and allows proceeds from timber sold to be reinvested into a healthier landscape. In a letter today to U.S. … Continue Reading


July 23, 2018

Wyden, Merkley announce $14 Million for Five Oregon Airports

Washington, D.C. - Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today announced that airports in Hillsboro, Albany, Klamath Falls, Bend and Grants Pass will receive a combined $14.3 million in federal grants for facility improvements and aviation training. "Quality of life throughout Oregon requires secure and reliable movement of products and the people who transport those goods," Wyden said. "These transportation resources will help to provide much-needed safety and dependability improvements for … Continue Reading


July 20, 2018

Wyden, Merkley, Brown Make Urgent Request for Federal Emergency Aid

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley and Gov. Kate Brown today asked federal officials to provide emergency aid for farmers affected by wildland fires raging in Oregon. The letter from Wyden, Merkley and Brown to Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue comes as the Substation Fire is engulfing wheat fields in Wasco and Sherman County and nearly 200 lightning-start fires are burning in southern and central Oregon. "This type of fire has not been seen in decades and has done … Continue Reading


July 20, 2018

Wyden, Merkley Oppose Trump Administration’s Rollback of Environmental Protections for Offshore Oil and Gas Drilling

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today joined their Senate colleagues in opposing the Trump administration's proposed rollback of environmental regulations that enhance the safety of offshore drilling operations. In a letter to Department of the Interior Secretary Zinke, the senators wrote that administration's proposal would erode key safety and environmental regulations, which require the oil and gas industry to meet minimum standards when drilling. Those essential … Continue Reading


July 19, 2018

Wyden Statement on Withdrawal of Ryan Bounds Nomination

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden issued the following statement after Senate Republican leadership today withdrew the nomination of Ryan Bounds for the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals: "I am gratified that the Senate has come to its senses and that long-time, proven practices of bipartisanship for judicial nominations have prevailed over partisan efforts to force through a deeply flawed and compromised nominee," Wyden said. "I want Chairman Grassley, Ranking Member Feinstein and the … Continue Reading


July 18, 2018

Wyden Co-sponsors Bill to Stop Trump Administration from Detaining and Shackling Pregnant Women

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden said today he is co-sponsoring legislation that would protect the health and safety of pregnant women and young people in immigration detention. The Stop Shackling and Detaining Pregnant Women Act introduced by U.S. Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA) would reinstitute the Obama-era policy that presumed the release of pregnant women and youth from immigration custody. The Trump administration had secretly ended the policy last year before announcing its new policy … Continue Reading


July 18, 2018

Wyden, Fischer Introduce Bipartisan Resolutions Honoring Pioneering Women in Computer Science and STEM

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Deb Fischer, R-Neb., today introduced two resolutions to the Senate, honoring the lifelong dedication of Ada Lovelace and Grace Hopper, two pioneering women in computer science whose ingenuity led the world into the computing age. "Ada Lovelace and Grace Hopper imagined the ways computing could shape our world and played fundamental roles in bringing those dreams to life," Wyden said. "Their impact has too often been overlooked given that … Continue Reading


July 17, 2018

Wyden Introduces Legislation to Hold Gun Dealers Accountable for Illegal Gun Sales

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden said today that he has joined his Senate colleagues in introducing legislation that would ensure gun dealers are not engaging in illegal sales and provide the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) with clear enforcement mechanisms. "Gun violence deserves more than just thoughts and prayers, it demands real action by Congress," Wyden said. "This legislation takes a long-overdue critical step in the right direction, holding gun … Continue Reading


July 13, 2018

Wyden, Gardner Ask DOJ to Investigate Cyber Harassment of U.S. Military Families by Russian Intelligence

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Cory Gardner, R-Colo. sent a letter earlier this week to Attorney General Jeff Sessions urging the Department of Justice to investigate cyber harassment of U.S. military families by Russian intelligence services. "If substantiated, the claims about APT28 posing as the Cyber Caliphate could be the first public evidence that influence operations have specifically targeted American military families," the senators wrote. "If left unchecked, … Continue Reading


July 11, 2018

Wyden, Durbin, Feinstein, Murray Call for Removal of Office of Refugee Resettlement Director

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, the top Democrat on the Senate Finance Committee, along with Sens. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., and Patty Murray, D-Wash., today called on Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) Alex Azar to remove the director of the Office of Refugee Resettlement. Their letter comes just a day after the administration failed to meet a court-ordered deadline to reunify children separated from their parents under Trump's inhumane … Continue Reading


July 11, 2018

Wyden, Merkley Introduce Legislation to Help Disadvantaged Communities Rebuild Water Infrastructure

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today joined colleagues in introducing the Contaminant and Lead Electronic Accounting and Reporting Requirements (CLEARR) for Drinking Water Act, which would authorize $1 billion in federal funding to help small and disadvantaged communities replace contaminated water infrastructure to comply with Safe Drinking Water Act requirements. "Access to safe drinking water is a human right, and public health for all Americans requires … Continue Reading

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