The Judiciary Committee

The Judiciary Committee has one of the broadest jurisdictions in the Senate, ranging from criminal justice and immigration issues to antitrust and intellectual property law.

As a senior member of the Judiciary Committee, Senator Feinstein is working to make our communities safer by banning the manufacture or sale of military-style assault weapons, advocating for a comprehensive and balanced approach to stop gang violence, tackling the methamphetamine epidemic, prohibiting audio and video piracy and expanding the rights of crime victims.

Senator Feinstein has played a very active role in immigration reform legislation, including taking the lead on efforts to create a meaningful agriculture worker program. And she has been very involved in efforts to protect consumers’ personal information.

Furthermore, Senator Feinstein has been a longtime advocate for equal rights for the LGBT community, including the right to marry and sponsor same-sex spouses for immigration purposes.

A major responsibility of Senator Feinstein’s as a member of the Judiciary Committee is ensuring that federal courts have highly-qualified and objective judges, as well as the resources necessary to administer justice fairly.

Priorities

  • Restoring the ban on military-style assault weapons. On February 27, 2013, Senator Feinstein chaired a Judiciary Committee hearing on this legislation.
  • Supporting famers. Senator Feinstein took the lead on legislative efforts to establish the AgJOBS program to ease the severe worker shortage being experienced by frustrated farmers across the country. Senator Feinstein spoke at a Judiciary Committee hearing on April 22, 2013, about the agreement on immigrant farm workers included in the Senate-passed comprehensive immigration bill, the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act.
  • Championing marriage equality. Senator Feinstein has been an advocate for repealing the discriminatory Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) to ensure that legally married, same-sex couples are treated equally under federal law regardless of where they live. Senator Feinstein on July 20, 2011, spoke at a Judiciary Committee hearing on this issue, and on November 20, 2011, spoke at a press conference after her bill to repeal DOMA, the Respect for Marriage Act, passed the Judiciary Committee.
  • Battling identity theft. Protecting individuals from identity theft. Senator Feinstein is a longtime proponent of requiring businesses to notify consumers in the event of a security breach and prohibiting the sale or display of an individual’s Social Security number without his or her consent.
  • Reforming immigration policy. In addition to her work related to agircultural workers, Senator Feinstein has been vocal in her support for comprehensive immigration reform, including passage of the DREAM Act to permit undocumented youth raised in the United States to apply for legal permanent residence if they attend college or serve in the U.S. military.

Accomplishments

  • Enacted the Combat Methamphetamine Act of 2006, which places restrictions on the sale of ingredients needed in the production of methamphetamine.
  • Garnered passage of the Crime Victims’ Rights Act.
  • Enacted legislation to establish a nationwide AMBER Alert network.
  • Co-sponsored legislation creating the COPS program that put 100,000 new cops on the streets, including more than 14,000 additional officers in California.
  • Hate Crimes Sentencing Act: toughened penalties against offenders who commit hate crimes.
  • Gained approval of legislation to aggressively target drug traffickers.
  • Passed the ART Act to strengthen the rights of all copyright owners who deserve control over their work.

Related Records