Press Releases

Congresswoman Lee Applauds President’s Criminal Justice Reform Announcement

November 02, 2015

Washington, D.C. - Today, Congresswoman Barbara Lee released this statement applauding the President for enacting “fair chance” hiring policies for federal employees and contractors and for his continued leadership for criminal justice reform: “I applaud President Obama for his bold and continued leadership to advance criminal justice reform. Today’s announcement that the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) will adopt “fair chance” hiring policies is an important step toward ensuring that… Continue Reading

Escalation of U.S. Role in Syria Highlights Need for Congressional Debate

October 30, 2015

Oakland, CA - On news that U.S. troops will be escalating operations in Syria, Congresswoman Barbara Lee released this statement: “I am deeply concerned by escalating mission creep in Syria, especially since Congress has yet to debate the costs and consequences of this military operation. The Constitution is clear: the power to declare war rests with Congress. We serve as the voice of the American people - our actions in Congress should reflect that sacred responsibility. Congress must… Continue Reading

“Congratulations Mr. Speaker, Now Let’s Restore Congress’s Role in Matters of War and Peace”

October 29, 2015

Washington, D.C. - As Speaker Paul Ryan assumes the gavel, Congresswoman Lee released this statement calling for the overdue debate on U.S. military action in Iraq and Syria and the repeal of the blank checks for endless war: “I congratulate Paul Ryan on his election as Speaker of the House today. As he begins his tenure, Speaker Ryan has an important opportunity and duty to restore Congress’s constitutional role to debate matters of war and peace. Over the last 14 years, the authorizat… Continue Reading

Congresswoman Barbara Lee Calls for an End to the Longest War in US History

October 15, 2015

Oakland, CA - Congresswoman Barbara Lee released this statement on breaking news that the US will keep troops in Afghanistan through 2017: “Just last week, our nation marked the 14th anniversary of the US invasion in Afghanistan. Today, we learned that our troops will remain in the country through 2017, further extending the longest war in American history. In Afghanistan, our brave servicemen and women have gone above and beyond the call of duty. It’s past time to end this war. 2,350 b… Continue Reading

Congresswoman Lee Marks National Latino AIDS Awareness Day

October 15, 2015

Oakland, CA - Today, Congresswoman Barbara Lee, co-chair of the Congressional HIV/AIDS Caucus, released this statement marking National Latino AIDS Awareness Day: “As we mark National Latino AIDS Awareness Day, I am reminded of the impact this terrible virus has had on Latinos, at home and abroad. According to the CDC’s most recent data, Latinos compromise just 16 percent of the U.S. population but account for more than one-fifth of all new HIV infections. The estimated rate of new infecti… Continue Reading

Congresswoman Lee Says End of Pentagon Program to Train Syrian Rebels “Should Be A Wake-Up Call for Congress”

October 09, 2015

Washington, DC - Congresswoman Barbara Lee released the following statement upon the announcement that the Pentagon will abandon a $500 million program to train and equip Syrian rebels: "I applaud the Obama Administration's decision to end the Pentagon's program to train and equip Syrian rebels. More than a year after Congress authorized this program, only a handful of rebels have been trained. The failure of this program should be a wake-up call for Congress: instead of blindly wading further… Continue Reading

Congresswoman Lee & Senators Stabenow, Mikulski Introduce Bill to Improve Seniors’ Access to Mental Health Services

October 08, 2015

Washington, D.C. - Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D-CA) and U.S. Senators Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) and Barbara Mikulski (D-MD) today introduced a bill to help seniors who are struggling with mental illness. The Improving Access to Mental Health Act of 2015 will improve seniors’ access to behavioral health services by updating the way the Medicare program reimburses clinical social workers. Senator Stabenow, Senator Mikulski and Congresswoman Lee are long-time champions of enhancing patient access to… Continue Reading

Bipartisan Coalition Introduces Legislation to Save Lives of Mothers and Children

October 08, 2015

Washington, DC - Today, a bipartisan team introduced the Reach Every Mother and Child Act, a bold, bipartisan legislative initiative to accelerate the reduction of preventable maternal, newborn and childhood deaths worldwide. The measure was introduced by Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D-CA), Congressman Dave Reichert (R-WA), Congresswoman Betty McCollum (D-MN) and Congressman Michael McCaul (R-TX). “In the past fifteen years, the international community has halved the maternal and child morta… Continue Reading

14 Years, 2,350 Lives, Billions of Dollars & No End in Sight

October 07, 2015

Washington, DC - Today, Congresswoman Barbara Lee released this statement on the 14th anniversary of the Afghanistan War: “Today marks the 14th anniversary of the Afghanistan War - our nation’s longest war - and sadly, there seems to be no end in sight. Despite a war-weary public, calls continue to keep more U.S. troops in Afghanistan for many more years. This war has already cost our nation too much. It has sacrificed the lives of 2,350 of our brave servicemen and women, including six in … Continue Reading

“I fear that this deal will put American workers in a race to the bottom” says Congresswoman Barbara Lee Concerning TPP Deal

October 04, 2015

Oakland, CA - Today, Congresswoman Barbara Lee released the following statement on news that negotiators in Atlanta had reached a deal on the Trans-Pacific Partnership: “America’s trade policies should be designed to create good-paying jobs and improve the standard of living for American families. Sadly, the Trans-Pacific Partnership deal reached in Atlanta is unlikely to achieve either. This deal was written through secretive, closed-door meetings in which lobbyists and major multinati… Continue Reading

Congresswoman Lee Remembers the Life and Legacy of Former Congressman William Donlon ‘Don’ Edwards

October 03, 2015

Oakland, CA - Congresswoman Lee released this statement upon the passing of former Congressman William Edwards: I am deeply saddened by the passing of my friend, former Congressman William Donlon ‘Don’ Edwards, a true leader who served our country for thirty-two years in Congress. Congressman Edwards was a champion for civil rights. Elected in 1962, he served as chairman of the House Subcommittee on Civil Liberties and Civil Rights for 23 years and served on the Judiciary Committee. He … Continue Reading

Congresswoman Barbara Lee Releases Statement on September Jobs Report

October 02, 2015

Oakland, CA - Today, the Department of Labor announced that September marked the 67th 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 sustained progress in our economic recovery. As companies grow and hire, this month marks the continuation of the longest consecutive period of private sector job growth in our nation’s history. … Continue Reading

Congresswoman Barbara Lee Introduces Legislation Commemorating 70th Anniversary of the United Nations

October 01, 2015

Washington, DC - During this year’s United Nations General Assembly, Congresswoman Barbara Lee introduced legislation recognizing the 70th anniversary of the UN’s establishment. “The United Nations is vital to our global community and essential to realizing a peaceful and prosperous shared future,” said Congresswoman Barbara Lee, who is serving her second term as a congressional representative to the UN General Assembly. “Our country and global community faces unprecedented challenges. I beli… Continue Reading

Congresswoman Barbara Lee Releases Video Marking National Gay Men’s HIV/AIDS Awareness Day

September 26, 2015

Washington, DC - Today, Congresswoman Barbara Lee, co-chair and co-founder of the bipartisan and bicameral Congressional HIV/AIDS Caucus released this video marking National Gay Men’s HIV/AIDS Awareness Day. Since entering Congress, Congresswoman Lee has authored or co-authored every major piece of HIV/AIDS legislation. In the 114th Congress, she has introduced the REPEAL HIV Discrimination Act (H.R. 1586), to advance efforts to repeal discriminatory HIV/AIDS laws, and the Real Edu… Continue Reading

Congresswoman Lee Applauds Appointment of Berkeley Pastor Michael McBride to President’s Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships

September 24, 2015

“I applaud the appointment of Pastor Michael McBride to serve on the President’s Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnership. Pastor McBride is a strong spiritual leader in the East Bay who is deeply committed to empowering urban communities and is a champion for social and racial justice,” said Congresswoman Lee. “I congratulate Pastor McBride on this well-deserved appointment and I know his expertise will be a wonderful addition to the President’s Advisory Council.” Pastor… Continue Reading

Rep. Barbara Lee: “Pope Francis’s Message of Peace and Social Justice Should Inspire Congress to Act”

September 23, 2015

Washington, DC - Congresswoman Barbara Lee released this statement following Pope Francis’s historic address to Congress: “During a joint-session of Congress today, His Holiness Pope Francis reminded us of our sacred duty: to protect and advocate for the most vulnerable and voiceless in our society and our world. His call for peace and justice should inspire Congress and our entire nation. As we work to address the immense challenges facing our nation - climate change, persistent poverty, … Continue Reading

Congresswoman Lee Welcomes Pope Francis to Washington DC

September 23, 2015

Washington, DC - Today, Congresswoman Barbara Lee joined the White House ceremony welcoming His Holiness Pope Francis to Washington, DC. “It was a pleasure to join the nation in welcoming Pope Francis to Washington, DC,” said Congresswoman Barbara Lee. “I look forward to his historic address before Congress and I hope that his positive message of social justice, environmental stewardship and compassion will guide policymakers as we seek to create opportunity for all and preserve our fragile p… Continue Reading

Congresswoman Lee Announces $2.25 Million in Federal Funding to Create or Preserve 18 Community-Oriented Law Enforcement Jobs in the East Bay

September 22, 2015

Oakland, CA - Today, Congresswoman Barbara Lee announced $2.25 million in awards from the U.S. Department of Justice’s Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) program to communities in the East Bay. The cities of Oakland, Berkeley and Alameda County will grants. The funds will create or preserve 18 law enforcement jobs that increase community policing capacity in the East Bay. “I am pleased to announce this federal funding to create or preserve 18 community-orientated law enforcement… Continue Reading

“We must be defiant against these attacks on the bedrock of our democracy,” says Congresswoman Lee on National Voter Registration Day

September 21, 2015

Washington, DC - Today, Congresswoman Barbara Lee released this statement celebrating National Voter Registration Day: “Voting and voting rights are the foundation of our democracy. Our nation is stronger when everyone has a voice in the political process. This National Voter Registration Day, I encourage all Americans to register to vote and make a plan to cast your ballot on Election Day. Sadly, in recent years, the right of Americans to vote has come under attack. From discriminatory… Continue Reading

Congresswoman Lee: “Sky-High Poverty Rate is Shameful and Completely Unacceptable”

September 16, 2015

Washington, DC - Congresswoman Barbara Lee, chair of the Democratic Whip’s Task Force on Poverty, Income Inequality and Opportunity, released this statement following the Census Bureau distribution of Income, Poverty and Health Insurance Coverage data for 2014: “The new Census Bureau data reveals that tens of millions of Americans are still struggling to get by with far too little. With nearly fifteen percent of the population living in poverty - that’s one in seven Americans - it’s past time… Continue Reading

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