Chairman's Press

May 21, 2020

Senate Foreign Relations Committee Approves Robert Levinson Hostage Recovery and Hostage-Taking Accountability Act

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and Senator Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on the Western Hemisphere, issued the following statements after the Senate Foreign Relations Committee approved their bipartisan bill to bolster U.S. government resources to bring back Americans held hostage or unlawfully detained abroad. The Robert Levinson Hostage Recovery and Hostage-Taking Accountab… Continue Reading


May 21, 2020

Ranking Member Menendez Statement on Trump Administration’s Withdrawal from the Open Skies Treaty

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, issued the following statement in reaction to the Trump Administration's withdrawal of the United States from the Open Skies Treaty, which violated U.S. law. The Open Skies Treaty is a key part of America's international arms control strategy. The Open Skies Treaty allows the 34 signatory countries, including the United States and Russia, to conduct reconnaissance flights over each other's … Continue Reading


May 21, 2020

Ranking Member Menendez Opening Remarks at Committee Business Meeting

WASHINGTON - Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, delivered the following remarks at the beginning of today's Foreign Relations Committee business meeting. "Mr. Chairman, I have a two preliminary matters that I would like to address. As an initial matter, I ask for unanimous consent to enter into the record of this meeting a number of items related to the nomination of Michael Pack. These materials include letters from all of the democrat… Continue Reading


May 20, 2020

Leading Senators Outline Standards for Trump Admin’s Support of Human Rights Worldwide ahead of Controversial State Department Commission Report

WASHINGTON - Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, along with 19 of his Democratic Senate colleagues, today sent a letter to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to raise significant concerns about the objectives of the Department of State's Commission on Unalienable Rights. Senator Menendez has questioned the purpose of the Commission since its formation as a 10-member body lacking the diversity of viewpoints required for advising the U.S. State D… Continue Reading


May 20, 2020

Menendez, Rubio Mark World Press Freedom Day with Bipartisan Resolution

WASHINGTON - Senators Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and Senator Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations' Subcommittee that oversees human rights, today led their Senate colleagues in introducing a bipartisan resolution to commemorate World Press Freedom Day. The resolution underscores the sacrifices that journalists around the world have borne in pursuit of truth and accountability. The resolution also acknowledges increas… Continue Reading


May 20, 2020

***VIDEO*** Ranking Member Menendez Congratulates Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen on Second Inauguration

WASHINGTON - Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today released a video message congratulating Tsai Ing-wen on her second inauguration as President of Taiwan. "Taiwan's democracy is one of the world's great success stories, and the Taiwanese people's embrace of the rule of law and of democracy is an inspiration the world over," the Senator said. "As the international community works together to combat COVID-19, it critically important for … Continue Reading


May 20, 2020

SFRC Democrats Confront Committee Chairman for Holding Controversial Non-COVID Business Meeting While Limiting Press Access

WASHINGTON - Ranking Member Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) was joined by the entire Democratic bench of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in sending a pair of letters today to Chairman Jim Risch (R-Idaho) to reinforce their opposition to his plans to convene a committee business meeting without any major legislation related to fighting COVID-19, against multiple objections from committee members, and while limiting press and public access. With a proposed agenda centered on voting on controversial p… Continue Reading


May 19, 2020

Menendez Calls on DoJ to Review Former Rep. Rivera’s Work as a Foreign Agent for the Maduro Regime

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today called on the Department of Justice to review whether former Florida Republican Congressman David Rivera violated the Foreign Agent Registration Act (FARA) in his work for the regime of Venezuelan dictator Nicolás Maduro and Venezuela's state oil company Petróleos de Venezuela, S.A. (PDVSA). The Senator's letter follows reports that PDVSA offered to pay millions to the F… Continue Reading


May 18, 2020

Ranking Member Menendez Announces New Legislation to Protect State Department and Other Inspectors General

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today announced he will introduce new legislation to protect Inspectors General for the State Department and other Foreign Affairs agencies from removal and bolster Congress's ability to review attempts to remove Inspectors General. The Senator's bill would also require that Acting Inspectors General be career officials, not political appointees, and would mandate recusal by agency heads an… Continue Reading


May 16, 2020

Menendez & Engel Launch Probe into Removal of State Department Inspector General

Washington- Senator Bob Menendez, Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, and Representative Eliot L. Engel, Chairman of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, today launched an investigation into President Trump's firing of State Department Inspector General Steve Linick. Writing to the White House, the Department of State, and the State Department Office of Inspector General, the lawmakers requested that administration officials preserve all records related to the firing … Continue Reading


May 15, 2020

Menendez, Rubio, Risch Applaud Senate Passage of Uyghur Human Rights Policy Act

WASHINGTON - Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee was joined by Senators Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and Jim Risch (R-Idaho), and Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, issued the following statements after the Senate unanimously approved an amended version of the Uyghur Human Rights Policy Act of 2020 (S.3744). The bill is an important step in countering the totalitarian Chinese government's widespread and horrific human rights abuses in … Continue Reading


May 14, 2020

Ranking Member Menendez Statement on Michael Pack

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today issued the following statement on the nomination of Michael Pack to be CEO of the U.S. Agency for Global Media. Mr. Pack's nomination has been held up due to serious and outstanding concerns about inappropriate and potentially unlawful activity involving his business dealings. "Today the Office of the Attorney General for the District of Columbia (OAG) informed the Senate Foreign R… Continue Reading


May 12, 2020

Menendez, Engel, Thompson & Nadler Reject Administration’s Legal Explanation for Halting Asylum Processing

Washington-Today, Ranking Member Bob Menendez of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations and Chairmen Eliot L. Engel of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, Bennie G. Thompson of the House Committee on Homeland Security, and Jerrold L. Nadler of the House Committee on the Judiciary rejected the Trump Administration's legal justification for its decision to halt asylum processing during the COVID-19 pandemic. After seeking answers on this issue for nearly two months, the lawmakers received a… Continue Reading


May 12, 2020

Senate Unanimously Approves Menendez, Inhofe Legislation to Work Towards Taiwan’s Inclusion in WHO

WASHINGTON -Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) and Senator Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), co-chairs of the Senate Taiwan Caucus, issued the following statement after the Senate unanimously passed S. 249, their legislation calling for the Secretary of State to develop a strategy for Taiwan to regain observer status in the World Health Organization. "As the world bears witness to the risks and costs of China's decades-long efforts to block Taiwan's participation in the World Health Organization, the United S… Continue Reading


May 08, 2020

Menendez Remarks on Effort to Override Trump Veto of War Powers Resolution

WASHINGTON - Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today spoke on the Senate floor to urge his colleagues to support an effort to override President Trump's veto of S.J. Res. 68, a bipartisan joint resolution demanding the removal of U.S. troops from hostilities against Iran that are not authorized by Congress. "We have the responsibility to ensure that the Executive is effectively deploying every diplomatic tool it can before rushing recklessl… Continue Reading


May 08, 2020

Menendez Statement on the 75th Anniversary of the End of WWII in Europe

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, issued the following statement in observance of the 75th anniversary of V-E Day, a day marking the end of World War II in Europe: "75 years ago, Allies from Europe, the United States, and around the world came together to defeat a Nazi regime responsible for the holocaust and millions dead across the continent. I join the people of Europe, and those around the world, in celebrating the 7… Continue Reading


May 08, 2020

Menendez, Six Senate Colleagues Call on Kyrgyzstan President to Release Prisoners

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, was joined by six of his Senate colleagues in calling on the President of Kyrgyzstan Sooronbay Jeenbekov to release detainees currently serving sentences for peaceful activism. The Senators affirmed that "Individuals should never be imprisoned for exercising their rights of freedom of assembly, association, and speech" and urged President Jeenbekov to "release these individuals on the m… Continue Reading


May 08, 2020

Senate Dems Unveil Comprehensive COVID-19 International Response and Recovery Act

WASHINGTON - As the Senate reconvenes despite the continued spread of coronavirus, U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, was joined by Senators Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), Chris Coons (D-Del.), Tom Udall (D-N.M.), Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), Tim Kaine (D-Va.), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), Ed Markey (D-Mass.) and Cory Booker (D-N.J.) in introducing sweeping comprehensive legislation to provide an additional $9 billion in funding to he… Continue Reading


May 07, 2020

Foreign Relations Committee Democrats Announce Opposition to Convening Committee Business Meeting without COVID-19 Focus

WASHINGTON - Ranking Member Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) was joined by the entire Democratic bench of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in sending a letter to Chairman Jim Risch (R-Idaho) to express their opposition to his plans of convening a committee business meeting next week without any major legislation related to fighting COVID-19. With a proposed agenda centered on voting on a controversial political nominee with a history of unresolved ethical and legal issues, the Democrats highlighted t… Continue Reading


May 07, 2020

Menendez Presses State Department for Internal Communications on COVID-19 Origins and Preparedness

WASHINGTON - Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today called upon Secretary Pompeo to release internal documents that would shed light on what information the State Department had during the earliest stages of the COVID-19 outbreak, including about the origins of the virus, communications or warnings from the World Health Organization (WHO) and embassies abroad, and Department memos and documents sent to the White House and other federal agen… Continue Reading

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