Press Releases

August 06, 2020

Wyden Introduces Legislation to Close Dangerous Loophole to Protect Domestic Abuse Survivors

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today joined U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., and colleagues to introduce legislation to protect domestic violence survivors from gun violence by closing loopholes that allow domestic abusers to legally obtain weapons. In 2018, Oregon closed the "boyfriend loophole" by expanding the definition of intimate partner to include people who weren't married, didn't share children or hadn't lived together. Today's legislation would expand the … Continue Reading


August 06, 2020

Wyden Joins Colleagues in Fight to Secure Child Care Relief in Next Senate COVID-19 Stimulus Package

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., this week joined U.S. Sens. Tina Smith, D-Minn., Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., and colleagues in calling on Senate leadership to prioritize the inclusion of their plan for a $50 billion child care bailout in the next COVID-19 relief package. The Child Care is Essential Act would stabilize the child care system, keep providers in business, and ensure parents are able to go back to work when it is safe to return. It was recently passed in the U.S. … Continue Reading


August 06, 2020

Wyden and Clarke Introduce Bill to Eliminate Barriers to Fixing Critical Medical Equipment During the Pandemic

Washington, D.C. - Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Rep. Yvette D. Clarke, D-N.Y., today introduced legislation to allow trained experts to maintain and repair essential medical equipment during the COVID-19 pandemic, and temporarily suspend restrictions that are blocking needed repairs. The Critical Medical Infrastructure Right-to-Repair Act of 2020 would allow trained repair technicians to more easily access information and tools required to complete maintenance and repair of critical medical … Continue Reading


August 06, 2020

As Oregonians Report Health Issues, Wyden Demands Answers from DHS and DOJ on the Health Impacts of Tear Gas Used Against Peaceful Protesters

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today pressed the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) on the agencies' sustained use of tear gas against peaceful protesters in Portland, Ore., following reports that a number of Oregonians have reported irregularities in their menstrual cycles after being tear gassed. In a letter, Wyden demanded Attorney General William Barr and DHS Acting Secretary Chad Wolf answer questions on the negative impacts … Continue Reading


August 05, 2020

Wyden, Cortez Masto Propose Bill to Reduce Police Violence During Mental Health Crises

Washington, D.C. - Senate Finance Committee Ranking Member Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Senator Catherine Cortez Masto, D-Nev., today proposed a new bill to help states adopt mobile crisis response teams that can be dispatched when a person is experiencing a mental health or substance use disorder (SUD) crisis instead of immediately involving law enforcement. "It's long past time to re-imagine policing in ways that reduce violence and structural racism, and health care can play a key role in that … Continue Reading


August 05, 2020

As Congress Negotiates COVID-19 Relief, Wyden and Booker Lead Call for Federal Support for Rural Economies

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Cory Booker, D-N.J., today introduced legislation to create thousands of living wage jobs in rural America as these communities continue to grapple with unique and devastating economic challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic. The 21st Century Conservation Corps Act builds on a recent Wyden bill and a recent Booker bill and supports rural economies by investing in job training and development, rangeland and working lands conservation … Continue Reading


August 04, 2020

Wyden Testifies at Judiciary Subcommittee Hearing on Federal Use of Force at Portland Protests

Time is short so I'll have just a few points to make this afternoon on protecting free speech. First, as a Senator from Oregon and a Portlander myself, I want to begin by asking who Americans honestly believe is the real threat to our Constitutional rights. Is it the Oregonians who've gathered together in overwhelmingly peaceful protests for racial justice since the murder of George Floyd? Or is it the heavily armed secret police snatching Portlanders off the streets into unmarked vans … Continue Reading


August 04, 2020

Merkley, Wyden Announce Over $750,000 Water Infrastructure Grant for City of Echo

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden today announced that the City of Echo, Oregon will receive $769,875 in federal grant funding to upgrade and improve the efficiency of the city's wastewater treatment plant. The funding is being allocated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Water & Waste Disposal Program. "Safe, reliable, and efficient water infrastructure is a must for the health and safety of our families and our environment," said Merkley, … Continue Reading


August 04, 2020

Merkley, Wyden, Colleagues Urge Senate to Reject Trump Administration Plan to Cut Funding to Schools that Follow Public Health Guidance

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden, along with 28 of their Senate colleagues, are urging Senate leadership to reject the Trump administration push to condition education funds in the next coronavirus relief package on the reopening of elementary and secondary schools for in-person instruction. In a letter to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Appropriations Committee Chairman Richard Shelby (R-AL), and … Continue Reading


August 04, 2020

“Unlawful, Unfair, Illogical, Impossible”: Oregon Members Call on U.S. Department of Education to Rescind Rule that Would Misdirect $11M from Oregon Public Schools

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici,Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley, and Representatives Peter DeFazio and Earl Blumenauer called on the U.S. Department of Education to rescind a rule that would take up to $11,310,291 from Oregon public schools and redirect it to private schools, calling it unlawful, unfair, illogical, and impossible. The Representatives and Senators responded to an interim final rule from the U.S. Department of Education that incorrectly interprets the … Continue Reading


July 31, 2020

Wyden, Merkley, Colleagues to McConnell: Immigrants Are Essential and Deserve Support in Coronavirus Relief Legislation

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today urged Majority Leader McConnell to support tax-paying immigrant families who have Individual Tax Identification Numbers (ITIN) in Oregon and across the nation by ensuring they have access to economic relief payments from the CARES Act and any future coronavirus relief package. An estimated 20 million immigrants work in essential industries. These immigrants, particularly undocumented workers, comprise a disproportionate … Continue Reading


July 31, 2020

Wyden, Cassidy and Bicameral Coalition Request FTC Investigate Advertisers Tracking Americans at Places of Worship and Protests

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Sen. Bill Cassidy, R-La., led a bipartisan group of 10 members today calling for the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to investigate the online ad economy, particularly the tracking of Americans at places of worship and protests and then selling that information to advertisers, hedge funds and the government. Wyden, Cassidy and other members asked the FTC to investigate how personal data, including location information, collected from … Continue Reading


July 31, 2020

Wyden, Gillibrand, Booker and Sanders Urge Senate Leadership to Prioritize Direct Relief for Small Farmers in Response to Ongoing Economic Crisis

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., Cory Booker, D-N.J., and Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., are calling for direct relief for small farmers who have been hit hard by months of closed restaurants, schools, and farmers markets. In a letter sent to Senate leadership, the senators urged the Senate to include the Relief for America's Small Farmers Act in the next coronavirus response package. The comprehensive legislation would provide economic relief for small … Continue Reading


July 31, 2020

Wyden, Gillibrand, Booker and Sanders Urge Senate Leadership to Prioritize Direct Relief for Small Farmers in Response to Ongoing Economic Crisis

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., Cory Booker, D-N.J., and Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., are calling for direct relief for small farmers who have been hit hard by months of closed restaurants, schools, and farmers markets. In a letter sent to Senate leadership, the senators urged the Senate to include the Relief for America's Small Farmers Act in the next coronavirus response package. The comprehensive legislation would provide economic relief for small … Continue Reading


July 31, 2020

Wyden Demands Answers From Homeland Security Intelligence on Role in Tracking and Suppressing Portland Protests

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden and his fellow Democrats on the Senate Intelligence Committee today demanded the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Office of Intelligence and Analysis (I&A) provide information to the Committee about the role it has played in responding to the protests in Portland. "We have grown increasingly concerned about the role and operations of the Department of Homeland Security, and the Office of Intelligence and Analysis (I&A) in particular, with … Continue Reading


July 31, 2020

Merkley, Wyden Push to Support School Meal Programs Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

WASHINGTON - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden are urging the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to continue critical flexibility that has allowed students to access much-needed meals throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. If extended throughout the 2020-2021 school year, children would maintain access regardless of school opening status, and struggling school nutrition programs would benefit from additional financial relief. "The COVID-19 pandemic has forced schools … Continue Reading


July 30, 2020

Wyden Opposes Trump Nominee to National Counterterrorism Center

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., opposed the nomination of Christopher Miller to be director of the National Counterterrorism Center, after Miller failed to meaningfully respond to concerns about the federal occupation of downtown Portland that has caused escalating chaos and violation of Oregonians' constitutional rights. Wyden, a senior member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, released the following statement after the committee yesterday voted to advance Miller's … Continue Reading


July 29, 2020

Senate Indian Affairs Committee Advances Wyden and Merkley Bills to Support Oregon Tribes

Washington, D.C. - The U.S. Senate Committee on Indian Affairs today passed the Western Tribal Water Infrastructure Act of 2019, legislation introduced by U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley to improve water quality and services for tribal communities in Oregon. The Committee also advanced legislation sponsored by Merkley and Wyden that seeks to correct an error made in a 1994 piece of legislation to correct an old survey error. This legislation would allow the Confederated Tribes of Grand … Continue Reading


July 29, 2020

Wyden, Merkley Press Feds to Improve Hemp Farming Rules

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today asked federal officials to change costly and confusing rules for farmers in Oregon and nationwide that cover the growing and testing of hemp. "We fear that without these changes, our past work and efforts to support hemp farmers and the industry across the country may be for naught and we will not be able to achieve the growth and success we all know is possible with the right support and policies in place," Wyden and Merkley … Continue Reading


July 28, 2020

Merkley, Wyden Announce Nearly $15 Million in Federal Funding for Oregon Department of Forestry Following Garner Complex Fire

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden today announced that the Oregon Department of Forestry will receive nearly $15 million in federal reimbursements for costs associated with fighting the Garner Complex Fire, freeing up critical resources for future firefighting needs. The Garner Complex fire began in July 2018, when a lightning storm near Grants Pass set off a total of 12 fires that cumulatively burned more than 25,000 acres of land. "On behalf of all … Continue Reading

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