Press Releases

April 03, 2019

Wyden, Merkley Urge Feds to Support Three Eastern Oregon Forests

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today urged the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) to take steps that ensure three national forests in Eastern Oregon each can support timber harvest, recreation, ranching, wildlife habitat and protection. The senators' letter to USFS seeking separate planning processes for the Umatilla, Wallowa-Whitman and Malheur National Forests comes in response to the agency's recent decision to withdraw a comprehensive Blue Mountain Forest Plan covering … Continue Reading


April 03, 2019

Wyden Floor Statement on McConnell’s Nuclear Option Push

M. President, the Republican Leader is reportedly on the verge of "going nuclear" to speed through the confirmation of more right-wing nominees. He says Democrats are guilty of extreme, unprecedented obstruction. And so he claims his hand has been forced, and that's why he needs to force this change to Senate rules. Here in the real world, however, the facts tell a different story. So today I want to lay out a few key points as to why this is the wrong way to go. When you look at the … Continue Reading


April 03, 2019

Wyden, Grassley Probe Reports of Abuse at Group Homes in Oregon & Iowa

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senate Finance Committee Ranking Member Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Chairman Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, are requesting information from two companies affiliated with The MENTOR Network (Mentor) after recent news reports in Oregon and Iowa revealed multiple instances of abuse and neglect, and in one case, an apparent death. Mentor contracts with the two states to provide care for adults and children with intellectual and developmental disabilities. "When vulnerable Americans … Continue Reading


April 02, 2019

Wyden Cheers Congressional Passage of Bill to Improve Oregonians’ Health Care

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today welcomed the passage of bipartisan legislation to improve the Medicaid program, including Wyden-backed provisions that fund community-based behavioral health programs and restrict the pharmaceutical industry's exploitive tactics of taxpayer dollars. The Medicaid Services Investment and Accountability Act of 2019, which passed the Senate today after passing through the House earlier this year, includes a number of key provisions that … Continue Reading


April 02, 2019

Wyden, McConnell Urge Federal Financial Regulators to Prevent Discrimination of Legal Hemp Industry

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., today sent letters to several federal banking and financial regulatory institutions reiterating hemp's legality and requesting timely guidance and clarification to help ease concerns from lawful hemp farmers and producers about the lack of access to financial services. Senators Wyden and McConnell wrote the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), the Office of the Comptroller of the … Continue Reading


April 02, 2019

Wyden Presses Energy Secretary on Trump Administration Proposal to Privatize Bonneville Power, Cut Budget for Hanford Cleanup

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today pressed Energy Secretary Rick Perry on the Trump administration's proposal to privatize the Bonneville Power Administration during a Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources hearing on the administration's budget request. "Privatizing Bonneville would just amount to garden variety robbery for families in the Northwest, particularly the ones walking on an economic tightrope and balancing the food bill against the fuel bill, and the … Continue Reading


April 02, 2019

Senate Passes Wyden-Fischer Resolution Recognizing WWII Codebreaker Elizebeth Friedman

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Sen. Deb Fischer, R-Neb., last night celebrated the Senate passage of a bipartisan resolution recognizing the contributions of Elizebeth Friedman, a cryptanalyst who helped break German codes during World War II. "Elizebeth Friedman's contributions, like those of many women in STEM and other fields, have been far too long overlooked," Wyden said. "She leaves a rich legacy in tenacity, creativity and excellence in the field of cryptology, … Continue Reading


March 29, 2019

Merkley, Wyden Demand Trump Reverse Proposed Cuts to Wildfire Prevention, Firefighting Budget

WASHINGTON, D.C. - With preparations for wildfire season already underway, Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden today joined five Western Senate colleagues in calling on the Trump administration to reverse proposed funding cuts to critical wildfire prevention and forest restoration projects throughout the country. The administration's recently released FY 2020 budget proposal cuts funding from nearly every U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and Department of the Interior (DOI) … Continue Reading


March 29, 2019

Wyden, Merkley Demand Equal Pay for U.S. Women’s Soccer Team

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley this week joined 33 other senators to call on U.S. Soccer to establish equal pay for its athletes. Despite their successes on the field, players on the U.S. Women's National Team are still paid considerably less than their male counterparts. In 2016, the Senate unanimously passed a resolution calling for U.S. Soccer to immediately eliminate gender pay inequity and treat all athletes with the same respect and dignity. Despite … Continue Reading


March 29, 2019

Wyden Calls for Investigation of Bernhardt’s Role in Blocking Scientific Report on Toxic Pesticides

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today called on the Office of the Inspector General for the Department of the Interior to investigate allegations that Acting Secretary David Bernhardt interfered with the scientific process or the scientific conclusions of a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) assessment of toxic pesticides' effect on several endangered species. Wyden on Thursday questioned Bernhardt directly about his role in blocking the USFWS analysis when Bernhardt … Continue Reading


March 28, 2019

Wyden, Paul, Amash and Lofgren Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Permanently End Mass NSA Surveillance of Phone Records

Washington, D.C. - Sens. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Rand Paul, R-Ky., and Reps. Justin Amash, R-Mich., and Zoe Lofgren, D-Calif., today introduced the Ending Mass Collection of Americans' Phone Records Act in the Senate and House to permanently end the National Security Agency's scandal-plagued program to surveil Americans' phone records. "The NSA's sprawling phone records dragnet was born in secrecy, defended with lies and never stopped a single terrorist attack. Even after Congress acted in … Continue Reading


March 28, 2019

Wyden, Blumenauer, Walden Reintroduce KOMBUCHA Act

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden and U.S. Reps. Earl Blumenauer and Greg Walden today reintroduced legislation that would update antiquated federal alcohol taxes and regulations on kombucha companies in Oregon and nationwide. "Kombucha's growth in Oregon generates jobs and small business growth throughout our state while creating fans everywhere of this tasty beverage," Wyden said. "Modernizing outdated taxes and regulations on kombucha is a must so this industry can continue to build … Continue Reading


March 28, 2019

Wyden, Merkley Reintroduce Bill to Require the President and Vice President to Fully Divest Their Financial Conflicts of Interests

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley have joined 29 Senate colleagues to reintroduce the Presidential Conflicts of Interest Act, a bill that would require the President and Vice President to disclose and divest any potential financial conflicts of interest. It also would require presidential appointees to recuse themselves from any specific matters involving the president's financial conflicts of interest that come before their agencies. "The U.S. presidency was … Continue Reading


March 28, 2019

Wyden, Merkley Secured $2.1 Million in Federal Disaster Recovery for Oregon Fisheries

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley this week secured $2.1 million in funding to help Oregon fisheries. The funds were finally allocated after a nearly two-year protracted battle with the Trump administration to approve Gov. Kate Brown's request for fishery disaster declaration in May 2017. "Hard-working Oregon fishermen gearing up for their spring returns have now received a $2.1 million lifeline that will help them support their families and contribute to the … Continue Reading


March 28, 2019

Wyden on Interior Secretary Nominee: “You sound like just another corrupt official”

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today announced his opposition to the nomination of David Bernhardt as Secretary of the Department of the Interior. Wyden pressed Bernhardt on his questionable ethics and conflicts of interest during his nomination hearing before the U.S. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. Wyden, a senior member of the Committee, raised concerns over evidence recently made public that Bernhardt meddled with science and blocked the release of a … Continue Reading


March 27, 2019

Wyden, Cotton Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Protect Personal Devices and Accounts of Senators and Staff from Cyber Threats

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. and members of the Senate Intelligence Committee Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Tom Cotton, R-Ark., today introduced a bipartisan bill to protect the personal electronic devices and accounts of senators and their staff from cyber threats. The Senate Cybersecurity Protection Act, S. 890, would permit the Senate Sergeant at Arms (SAA) to provide voluntary cybersecurity assistance to senators and certain Senate staff to secure their personal devices and accounts. Russia's … Continue Reading


March 26, 2019

Wyden on Green New Deal Vote: “This is a sham debate.”

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today on the Senate floor called Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's political stunt on the Green New Deal a "sham debate," and urged Congress to take meaningful, immediate action on climate. "This is a political game, and I don't believe anybody should take part in it. Climate change is the biggest long-term threat this country faces. The longer Congress waits to address climate change, the more damage it's going to do," said Wyden. "Years … Continue Reading


March 25, 2019

Wyden Statement on Attorney General Barr’s Letter to Congress

Washington, D.C. - Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., a senior member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, issued the following statement in response to the letter that Attorney General William Barr released Sunday afternoon: "Attorney General Barr's letter appears to be little more than a public relations strategy to get positive headlines for the president, while concealing from the American people Robert Mueller's actual report. No one should be surprised. Barr told Trump he didn't have to worry … Continue Reading


March 21, 2019

Wyden, Paul, Leahy, Daines Question DOJ Over Government Surveillance of Americans’ Location Information

Washington, D.C. -Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., and Sen. Steve Daines, R-Mt., today asked the Department of Justice a series of questions about when and how the government can collect information about Americans' location, in a bipartisan letter to Attorney General William Barr. The senators asked Attorney General Barr how the Supreme Court's decision in Carpenter v. United States, that the government must get a warrant to obtain location … Continue Reading


March 19, 2019

Wyden Statement on Calls to Regulate Speech Online and Repeal Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act

Senate Finance Committee Ranking Member Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today issued the following statement in reaction to new calls to regulate speech online and repeal Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act: "Tech companies certainly need to continue to be far more vigorous about identifying, fingerprinting and blocking content and individuals who incite hate and violence. If politicians want to restrict the First Amendment or eliminate the tools with which much of the world communicates in real … Continue Reading

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