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Durbin's Agenda for a New Year

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The U.S. Senate convenes a new session today. Illinois U.S. Senator Dick Durbin says the body will tackle an ambitious set of priorities this year.

With Durbin now in a majority-party leadership position, the agenda he laid out Sunday was dominated by foreign policy and Senate ethics reform. Durbin renewed his opposition to surging or boosting U.S. troop levels in Iraq. He said it’s too late to establish military stability there, and Iraq must seek a political solution.

On the domestic front, Durbin says his first priority for Illinois is to get more federal money for health care.

“We don’t have enough federal assistance when it comes to paying for health insurance for children of working families in our state. Medicaid--to help Stroger hospital and public and private hospitals across our state. So I think that would be one of my highest priorities,” he said.

Durbin says he’ll push for legalizing importation of cheap prescription drugs from Canada. He also says he looks forward to working with President Bush on immigration reform.

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