Senator Richard Joseph Durbin is an American politician and attorney. He is a senior U.S. Senator representing Illinois under the Democrats. He has been the Senate Democratic Whip since 2005. He is also the Senate Majority Whip and the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Durbin was born in East St. Louis, Illinois, on November 21, 1944. He graduated with a B.S. from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service in 1966. After his graduation, Durbin interned with Senator Paul Douglas. He later earned his J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center in 1967.
Senator Dick Durbin Career
Senator Dick Durbin started his career in politics while practicing law at Springfield. He became a legal counsel to Illinois State Lieutenant Governor from 1969 to 1972. He also worked as a legal counsel for the Illinois State Judiciary Committee for ten years, from 1972.
During his service as a legal counsel, Durbin ran for the seat of the Illinois state senate, in which he lost. He also lost his race for lieutenant governor in 1978.
While practicing law, Durbin then worked as a professor at Southern Illinois University from 1978 to 1983.
In 1982, Durbin won a seat at the U.S. House of Reps, representing the 20th district in central Illinois. Representing a rural district, he focused on improving agriculture in his district. He became a member of the House Agriculture Committee. He later won a seat at the Appropriation Committee.
Senator Dick Durbin was elected to the U.S. Senate after Senator Paul Simon announced his retirement in 1996. He won again in 2002, 2008, 2014, and 2020.
Senator Dick Durbin Accomplishments
Durbin is an active member of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. The organization handles the protection of wildlife in the Alaskan region.
Considered politically conservative, Risch voted against the Affordable Care Act and supported its repeal and replacement in 2010. He also introduced the Global Health Security and Diplomacy Act, which was not voted for.
His administration has been relentless in promoting national security.
He cosponsored the Israel Antiboycott Act, which would make it a federal crime to boycott any Israel and Israeli settlement. He was also a cosponsor of the Promoting American National Security and Preventing the Resurgence of ISIS Act.
He also protested against the increase in fuel prices, for which he was especially admired and appraised by American Airlines.
Senator Dick Durbin Criticisms
Senator Dick Durbin has faced allegations about conflict of interest with his wife, an Illinois lobbyist. According to the investigation, it was revealed he promoted federal funding for his wife’s clients. But, Durbin denied them.
Durbin also got himself in hot water over the IRS Scandal. He denied having any contact with the IRS during an IRS scandal during an editorial session in 2014. But, an email confirming his contact with the IRS during the scandal investigation was revealed. Yet, his involvement was unknown.
At the Amy Coney Barrett Supreme Court hearing, he was also criticized over anti-religion sentiments against a judicial nominee