Press Releases

July 27, 2022

Wyden, Merkley, Colleagues Introduce Bill to Codify the Right to Contraception

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley with colleagues have introduced legislation that would codify the right to contraception, which the Supreme Court first recognized more than half a century ago in its decision in Griswold v. Connecticut. The introduction follows Justice Clarence Thomas' concurring opinion last month in Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization - overturning Roe v. Wade - in which he urged the Court to reconsider its 1965 Griswold decision. Several … Continue Reading

July 26, 2022

Wyden, Colleagues Introduce Legislation to Combat Increased Use of Dangerous Gun Conversion Devices

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden and Senate colleagues introduced legislation this week to combat the increased use and proliferation of dangerous gun conversion devices. "The ease with which a semi-automatic weapon can become a fully-automatic weapon of mass murder is sickening. Period. Full stop," said Wyden. "Congress must urgently tackle the proliferation of illegal gun conversion devices head on to keep our communities safe and put an end to America's gun violence epidemic. The … Continue Reading

July 25, 2022

Wyden, Merkley: Nearly $17.5 Million to Rural Oregon Airports for Crucial Runway Improvements

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today announced that airports in Corvallis, Pendleton and Klamath Falls will receive a combined nearly $17.5 million from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for crucial safety improvements to runways. "Small airports' reliable air service in rural areas is crucial for Oregonians and our state's economy," Wyden said. "I am gratified to see these dollars go toward improving critical runway infrastructure that is often taken for … Continue Reading

July 25, 2022

Wyden, Merkley Announce an Additional Nearly $8.5 Million in Emergency Rental Assistance for Oregon

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today announced that Oregon will receive a combined nearly $8.5 million in federal emergency rental assistance funds. "The pandemic's deep economic impact, including the challenges it placed on the consistent need to pay rent, continues to ripple even as Oregonians go back to work," said Wyden. "Housing is a human right, so I'm glad to see more federal funds come into our state to help renters get extended assistance to cover costs. … Continue Reading

July 25, 2022

Wyden, Merkley, Colleagues Express Support for FDA’s Proposed Life-Saving Ban on Menthol Cigarettes and Flavored Cigars

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today joined Senate colleagues to express support for the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) proposed rules that would ban menthol in cigarettes and flavored cigars. Menthol numbs the throat and mitigates the harshness of tobacco smoke, making menthol cigarettes more appealing to youth and people beginning to smoke. "By increasing youth smoking and making cessation more difficult, menthol cigarettes have magnified the public health … Continue Reading

July 22, 2022

Wyden, Colleagues Press IRS on Tax Return Backlog

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden said today he has joined Senate colleagues to press the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) on the backlog of unprocessed tax returns and express concern about the broader effects of budget constraints on taxpayers in Oregon and nationwide. "We write to express our concern about the unprocessed tax return backlog, ongoing customer service challenges, and the effect of Internal Revenue Service (IRS) budget constraints on the agency's ability to serve … Continue Reading

July 22, 2022

Merkley, Wyden: Smith River National Recreation Area Expansion into Oregon Clears Key Hurdle

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden today announced the Smith River National Recreation Area Expansion Act (Smith River NRA), legislation to expand the Smith River NRA, cleared a key hurdle by passing out of a Senate committee on a bipartisan vote. Expanding the Smith River NRA by 58,000 acres into Oregon would protect the diverse ecosystems of the rivers, streams, and adjacent lands of the North Fork Smith River watershed, and help boost the local fishing and … Continue Reading

July 21, 2022

Wyden, Cornyn, Colleagues Call on Russia to Release Brittney Griner From Wrongful Detention

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR) and John Cornyn (R-TX) today led colleagues in the introduction of a bipartisan Senate resolution calling on the Russian government to immediately release U.S. citizen Brittney Griner from her wrongful detention, and urging the U.S. government in all its interactions with the Russian government to press for the WNBA player's release. In addition to demanding action to end the 5-month-long wrongful detention of Griner, the resolution also … Continue Reading

July 21, 2022

Wyden Urges Senate to Protect Access to Reproductive Health Care Funding

Mr. President, earlier this week my colleagues Senator Smith, Senator Murray and Senator Warren introduced a proposal called The Expanding Access to Family Planning Act, which I'm proud to cosponsor. I want to commend them for bringing it before the Senate today. The basic idea behind this legislation is simple. The Supreme Court overturned Roe against the will of the American people. States are criminalizing abortion. Many women and girls are now being forced to carry pregnancies to term … Continue Reading

July 21, 2022

Wyden, Merkley, Colleagues Introduce Bill to Protect Access to Reproductive Health Care Funding

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today cosponsored legislation that protects access to critical reproductive health care services - like birth control, cancer screenings and more - by providing a consistent and strong source of funding for the Title X Family Planning Program. "Every year, thousands of Oregonians rely on Title X family planning services for essential information about contraception and reproductive health care options," Wyden said. "With basic family … Continue Reading

July 20, 2022

Wyden, Brown, Casey Urge Social Security to Include Children in Eligibility Outreach Programs

Washington, D.C. - Senate Finance Committee Chair Ron Wyden, D-Ore., Social Security, Pensions, and Family Policy Subcommittee Chair Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, and Senate Special Committee on Aging Chair Bob Casey, D-Pa., today urged the Social Security Administration (SSA) to incorporate children in ongoing outreach efforts, to help families eligible for Supplemental Security Income (SSI). "We share President Biden and SSA's priority to advance equity throughout the Federal Government, … Continue Reading

July 18, 2022

Wyden, Merkley Urge SBA to Process All Eligible COVID Economic Injury Disaster Loan Applications

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley said today they are urging the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) to process COVID Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) applications that were received prior to the agency's May 6, 2022 deadline. "While we recognize the agency has assisted an unprecedented number of small businesses throughout the pandemic, our offices continue to hear from thousands of prospective borrowers awaiting consideration," Wyden and Merkley wrote in a … Continue Reading

July 18, 2022

Merkley, Wyden Join Murray in Letter to VA Secretary Urging End Discrimination against Same-Sex Spouses

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden today joined Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) in a letter to the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Secretary Denis McDonough pressing for answers and immediate action to ensure same-sex veteran couples have access to the full scope of spousal benefits they are owed. "Each of our veterans and their spouses deserve the same quality care and services once they leave the military - no matter who they love. Our veterans and their … Continue Reading

July 18, 2022

Wyden, Merkley: City of Amity To Receive More Than $6 Million in Grants and Loans for Water Improvements

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today announced that Amity has secured a $4.83 million loan and $1.5 million grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to improve water treatment, reliability and capacity in the Yamhill County town. "These federal investments will provide crucial help for Amity residents counting on safe and reliable drinking water in their homes, schools and small businesses," Wyden said. "I'm glad Amity's work to qualify for these funds … Continue Reading

July 18, 2022

Wyden, Merkley: Dayville Secures $32,200 Federal Grant for New Fire Station

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today announced that Dayville has secured a $32,200 federal grant to help build a new fire station in the Grant County town. "Federal investments just like this one in Dayville protect quality of life for rural residents and the small businesses who employ Oregonians in our state's more remote nooks and crannies," Wyden said. "I'm gratified that the City of Dayville's leaders have earned these resources to help rebuild their fire … Continue Reading

July 15, 2022

Merkley, Wyden Urge Biden Administration to Declare National and Public Health Emergencies on Reproductive Rights

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden joined Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Alex Padilla (D-CA) and a dozen other colleagues in a letter to President Biden and Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Xavier Becerra urging them to immediately declare national and public health emergencies on reproductive rights. Millions of Americans have been endangered by the Supreme Court's reckless decision to overturn Roe v. Wade and eliminate the … Continue Reading

July 14, 2022

Merkley, Wyden: $30 Million Headed to Astoria to Expand Coast Guard Facilities

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden announced that the United States Coast Guard awarded a $30 million federal contract to expand Coast Guard shore-side facilities at East Tongue Point in Astoria. This enable the facility to accommodate the home porting of Fast Response Cutters (FRCs). Fast Response Cutters are the newest class of ships currently being produced for the United States Coast Guard. The $30 million contract will ensure that East Tongue Point can … Continue Reading

July 14, 2022

Wyden, Merkley Statement on Nomination of Adrienne Nelson to U.S. District Court

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley issued the following joint statement about today's announcement from the White House of Associate Oregon Supreme Court Justice Adrienne Nelson's nomination to the U.S. District Court. "We wholeheartedly support President Biden's nomination of Associate Oregon Supreme Court Justice Adrienne Nelson to the U.S. District Court post. Justice Nelson is extremely well-qualified for this federal judgeship, combining her experience on … Continue Reading

July 14, 2022

Wyden Calls for Passage of the Freedom to Travel for Health Care Act

You know something has gone horribly wrong when the Senate is forced to consider a proposal called the Freedom to Travel for Health Care Act. The freedom … to travel … for health care. That's a freedom as basic as it gets. But the fact is, six Republicans on the Supreme Court ripped it out by the roots. Now state governments are moving toward criminalizing travel for health care. They're even moving toward criminalizing helping people travel for health care. I'd call it … Continue Reading

July 13, 2022

Wyden, Merkley: $225,000 to the Columbia-Pacific Economic Development District to Support a Diversified Economy on Oregon’s North Coast

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today announced that the Columbia-Pacific Economic Development District (Col-Pac) will receive $225,000 to establish an economic development planning framework that supports diversified job creation in the region. "I know from holding more than 1,000 town halls throughout our state that Oregon communities are doing an incredible job taking care of each other through unprecedented economic circumstances," Wyden said. "These federal … Continue Reading

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