Press Releases

Rep. Barbara Lee: Congress Must “Start Listening to the American People and Not the NRA”

January 05, 2016

Oakland, CA - Today, Congresswoman Barbara Lee released this statement following President Obama's executive action to address the epidemic of gun violence that's raging in the East Bay and communities around the country: "Today's actions by President Obama are an important and necessary step as we work to address the epidemic of gun violence in our communities. The President's actions will toughen background checks, bolster enforcement of existing laws, improve mental health services and driv… Continue Reading

Rep. Lee Responds to FDA Policy Change to Blood Donor Deferral Policy for MSM

December 22, 2015

Oakland, CA - Today, Congresswoman Barbara Lee (CA-13) released the following statement regarding the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) policy change of the blood donor deferral policy for men who have sex with men (MSM) from lifetime ban to one-year deferral: "I applaud today's decision from the Food and Drug Administration to lift the discriminatory lifetime blood donation ban for members of the MSM community. However, the policy of one year deferral still maintains the long outdated polic… Continue Reading

Congresswoman Barbara Lee Announces $2.7M Federal Grant to Support Job Training and Affordable Housing

December 17, 2015

Oakland, CA - Today, Congresswoman Barbara Lee announced that the Oakland Housing Authority (OHA) was awarded a $2.7 million Job Plus grant from the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to provide employment and educational opportunities that improves the quality of life for West Oakland's public housing residents. "I am pleased that the Oakland Housing Authority has been selected to receive this highly competitive funding and I am proud to have supported their grant application," … Continue Reading

Rep. Lee Celebrates One Year of Renewed Relations with Cuba

December 17, 2015

Washington, D.C. - Today, Congresswoman Barbara Lee, a member of the bipartisan Congressional Cuba Working Group's Steering Committee, released this statement marking the first anniversary of President Obama's historic announcement of renewed relations between the U.S. and Cuba: "One year ago, I joined many of my colleagues and the vast majority of the American people in applauding President Obama's bold action to end more than five decades of failed policy toward Cuba. The President's announc… Continue Reading

New Bipartisan Cuba Working Group Announced

December 16, 2015

Washington, D.C. - Today, a bipartisan group of twelve Members of Congress announced the formation of a Cuba Working Group to develop policies that modernize relations between the U.S. and Cuba. Congresswoman Barbara Lee, a long-time leader in efforts to normalize relations between the U.S. and Cuba, will serve on the Working Group's Steering Committee. "The formation of this bipartisan Working Group is another step forward in the effort to finally end more than fifty years of failed policy an… Continue Reading

Congresswoman Lee Marks 150th Anniversary of the Thirteenth Amendment along with East Bay Students

December 08, 2015

Oakland, CA - Today, Congresswoman Barbara Lee marked the sesquicentennial of the Thirteenth Amendment along with President Obama, her Congressional Black Caucus colleagues, Oakland's Rabbi Bloom and students from the East Bay’s Martin Luther King Jr. Freedom Center. She released this statement marking the 150th anniversary of the Thirteenth Amendment: “Today, our nation pauses to remember one of the most significant dates in American history: the end of slavery with the passage of an amendme… Continue Reading

300 Days of Congressional Inaction on ISIL

December 08, 2015

Washington, DC - It’s been 300 day since President Obama sent a draft authorization for the use of military force (AUMF) to Congress. Congresswoman Barbara Lee released this statement: “Everyone agrees that ISIL is a horrific terrorist organization that must be degraded and dismantled. As this conflict expands, Congress must be actively involved in addressing ISIL. Yet, for the past 300 days Congress has ignored its constitutional responsibility to debate the costs and consequences of ye… Continue Reading

Congresswoman Lee Releases Statement on November Jobs Report

December 03, 2015

Oakland, CA - Today, the Department of Labor announced that November marked the 69th consecutive month of private sector job growth. Congresswoman Barbara Lee, chair of the Democratic Whip’s Task Force on Poverty, Income Inequality and Opportunity, released this statement: “Today’s job report is yet more evidence of sustained progress in our nation’s economic recovery. November marks the 69th consecutive month of private sector job growth - the longest sustained period of growth in U.S. histo… Continue Reading

Additional Troop Deployment Demands Congressional Action

December 02, 2015

Washington, DC - Yesterday, President Obama ordered the deployment of additional specialized “expeditionary” forces to Iraq and Syria. Congresswoman Barbara Lee released this statement: “Everyone agrees that ISIL is a barbaric terrorist organization that must be degraded and dismantled. As this conflict expands, Congress must be actively involved in addressing ISIL. The deployment of additional special operations forces to Iraq should be a wake-up call to Congress - it’s past time to ho… Continue Reading

California Leaders Call for DOJ to Halt “Counterproductive” Enforcement Action Against Medical Marijuana Dispensaries

November 24, 2015

Washington, DC - Today, California Representatives Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D-CA13) and Congressmen Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA48) and Sam Farr (D-CA20) urged Attorney General Lynch to reconsider enforcement actions against California’s medical cannabis dispensaries following comprehensive, stringent and enforceable industry regulations recently signed into law. “We are concerned that the Department of Justice (DOJ) continues to threaten individuals and businesses acting within the scope of stat… Continue Reading

Congresswoman Lee's Statement on Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm Being Awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom

November 23, 2015

Oakland, CA - Congresswoman Barbara Lee released this statement as Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom: “Throughout her life, Congresswoman Chisholm - or Mrs. C as we called her - broke many barriers while tirelessly advocating for the most vulnerable in our nation and our world. The Presidential Medal of Freedom is a fitting tribute to her lifetime of work and advocacy. In 1969, Congresswoman Chisholm became the first African American … Continue Reading

“Congress Should Not Betray Our Nation’s Most Fundamental Values,” Says Congresswoman Lee

November 19, 2015

Washington, D.C. - Today, Congresswoman Barbara Lee spoke on the floor in opposition to the Republican closed rule (H. Res. 531), which does not allow for revisions or input by Members, and underlying bill, H.R. 4038. Following the vote on the Republican measure to halt and eliminate the resettlement of Syrian refugees, she released this statement: "People around the globe watched in horror as terrible attacks hit Paris and other cities around the world. My thoughts and prayers continue to be … Continue Reading

Congresswoman Lee Joins Colleagues in Urging President Obama to Find New DEA Leadership

November 19, 2015

Washington, DC - Today, Congresswoman Barbara Lee joined Congressmen Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA), Steve Cohen (D-TN), Sam Farr (D-CA), Ted Lieu (D-CA), and Jim McDermott (D-WA) in signing a letter led by Congressman Earl Blumenauer (D-OR). The letter calls on President Obama to find new DEA leadership following recent comments by Acting Administrator Rosenberg about medical marijuana being ‘a joke.’ “The Acting Administrator’s comments are simply inappropriate. California, Washington D.C., Guam a… Continue Reading

Congresswoman Lee Marks Veteran’s Day

November 10, 2015

Oakland, CA - Congresswoman Barbara Lee, a member of the Veterans Affairs funding subcommittee, offered the following statement marking Veterans Day: “Every year, on November 11th, we pause to honor the brave men and women who have served our nation. As the daughter of a veteran, I am deeply proud of our current and former service members, who have served and continue to serve this country with dignity and honor. Our men and women in uniform and their families make tremendous sacrifices wh… Continue Reading

Congresswoman Lee Recognized with National Cannabis Industry Association’s 2015 Legislative Leadership Award

November 10, 2015

Oakland, CA - Today, Congresswoman Barbara Lee received the 2015 Legislative Leadership Award from the National Cannabis Industry Association at the organization’s 5th annual gala dinner. “It is truly a humbling honor to receive this award. I’d like to thank the National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA), Board Chairwoman Jamie Lewis and Executive Director Aaron Smith for this tremendous honor,” said Congresswoman Barbara Lee. NCIA is the largest cannabis trade association in the U.S. a… Continue Reading

“Our Immigration Policies Should Keep Families Together,” Says Congresswoman Barbara Lee

November 10, 2015

Oakland, CA - Congresswoman Barbara Lee, a member of the Democratic Immigration Task Force, released this statement following the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit decision to maintain the injunction against the DAPA and expanded DACA programs: “Today’s decision by the 5th Circuit is misguided and deeply disappointing. For more than 50 years, our nation has had a clear legal precedent for the use of executive action on immigration policy. Our immigration policies should keep famil… Continue Reading

Congresswoman Lee Marks 50th Anniversary of Higher Education Act by Calling for Action to Address Crippling Student Loan Debt

November 09, 2015

Oakland, CA - Today, Congresswoman Barbara Lee, a member of the education funding subcommittee, released this statement marking the 50th anniversary of the Higher Education Act: “For fifty years, the Higher Education Act has opened the doors of educational opportunity to millions by making college more accessible and affordable. As we mark this milestone anniversary, Congress must come together and recommit to strengthening and expanding affordable educational opportunities for all. We m… Continue Reading

Congresswoman Lee Receives Thomas Merton Award for Her Work to Advance Peace and Social Justice

November 08, 2015

Oakland, CA - Today, Congresswoman Barbara Lee received the 43rd Thomas Merton Award from Pittsburgh’s Thomas Merton Center. “It is truly a humbling honor to receive this award. I’d like to thank the Thomas Merton Center Board of Directors for this tremendous honor,” said Congresswoman Barbara Lee. Past awardees of this honor include Dorothy Day, Marian Wright Edelman, Winona LaDuke, Noam Chomsky, Daniel Berrigan, Howard Zinn, Congressman Ronald V Dellums, Vandana Shiva, Bill McKibben, Ang… Continue Reading

Congresswoman Lee Releases Statement on October Jobs Report

November 06, 2015

Oakland, CA - Today, the Department of Labor announced that October marked the 68th consecutive month of private sector job growth. Congresswoman Barbara Lee, chair of the Democratic Whip’s Task Force on Poverty, Income Inequality and Opportunity, released this statement: “Today’s job report shows continued and sustained progress in our nation’s economic recovery. As companies continue to grow and hire more workers, we mark the continuation of the longest consecutive period of private sector … Continue Reading

Create American Jobs, Don’t Offshore Them with TPP

November 05, 2015

Washington, DC - Today, Congresswoman Lee released this statement concerning the newly released text of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Trade Agreement: “After years of secret negotiations, classified drafts and unprecedented influence from multinational corporations and special interests, the American people can finally see the text of the Trans-Pacific Partnership. It’s far worst then we thought. Far from being the most progressive trade deal ever negotiated, it’s a template to ship Americ… Continue Reading

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