May 13, 2021

Duckworth Helps Luján Secure Bipartisan Amendment to Invest $17 Billion in National Laboratories and DOE Facilities


[WASHINGTON, DC] – U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) helped U.S. Senator Ben Ray Luján (D-NM) lead the passage of an amendment to the Endless Frontier Act in the executive session of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Technology (CST) to invest $17 billion in U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) National Laboratories and User Facilities. The amendment will help support the entire U.S. innovation system to strengthen America’s global competitiveness, which includes Fermilab and Argonne National Laboratory in Illinois.

“One of the best ways for our nation to strengthen our competitiveness with the rest of the world is to enhance a crown jewel of American innovation: the incredible network of Department of Energy National Labs, particularly Illinois’ own Fermilab and Argonne National Laboratory,” Senator Duckworth said. “I’m proud to have worked with Senator Luján to pass our important bipartisan amendment that helps ensure the Endless Frontier Act invests in the National Science Foundation and enhances our National Labs, which are critical drivers of American innovation and capable of advancing even more groundbreaking scientific research and discovery.”

“Our National Laboratories are on the forefront of science, technology, and innovation, and I was proud to work across the aisle to advance this amendment to invest $17 billion in the Department of Energy and our National Labs. This amendment will also increase coordination and strengthen the role of the Department of Energy in the interagency working group created by the Endless Frontier Act,” said Luján, a former Co-Chair of the National Labs Caucus. “I will continue to look for opportunities to work with colleagues on both sides of the aisle to bolster American innovation and support new jobs and opportunities.”

The Endless Frontier Act seeks to advance and solidify the United States’ leadership in scientific and technological innovation through increased investments in the discovery, creation, and manufacturing of technology critical to U.S. national security and economic competitiveness.

In addition to Senators Luján and Duckworth, the amendment is co-sponsored by U.S. Senators Maria Cantwell (D-WA), John Thune (R-SD), Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) and Marsha Blackburn (R-TN).

Earlier this week, Senator Duckworth joined Senator Luján (R-NM), Senator Jim Risch (R-ID) and 16 of their Senate colleagues in sending a bipartisan letter to Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) requesting the Endless Frontier Act be modified to recognize the leading role the Department of Energy and National Laboratories play in shaping American innovation.