Information from the office of Senator Barbara Mikulski.

December 18, 2006

CONTACT: Melissa Schwartz


"Shouldn't we make it easier for the Pulaskis, Kosciuszkos and Marie Curies
of today to visit our country?"

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Barbara A. Mikulski (D-Md.) has been recognized
by the Polish American Congress with an award of appreciation for her
support of Polish-related legislation in the 109th U.S. Congress.
"I am honored to accept this award from the Polish American Congress. I
remain committed to strengthening ties between the United States and a free,
democratic Poland," said Senator Mikulski. "The United States is blessed
with few allies as stalwart as Poland."

In the final hours of the 109th Congress, Senator Mikulski joined Senator
George A. Voinovich (R-Ohio) in introducing the Secure Travel and
Counterterrorism Partnership Act of 2006 that would authorize an expansion
of the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) by up to five additional countries for a
probationary period of three years. Senator Mikulski expects Poland would
likely be one of the five countries.

Senator Mikulski has been fighting to include Poland in the VWP for years.
Last summer, she introduced an amendment to the immigration bill with
Senator Rick Santorum (R-Penn.) that would have added Poland to the VWP, but
the immigration bill failed to pass Congress.

"Shouldn't we make it easier for the Pulaskis, Kosciuszkos and Marie Curies
of today to visit our country?" continued Senator Mikulski. "We know that
our borders will be no less secure because of these Polish visitors to our
country, but we know that our alliance will be more secure because of this
legislation. "

Senator Mikulski has a long history of fighting in the U.S. Congress for
legislation that supports Poland, a close U.S. ally. In August 2005, she
introduced a Sense of the Senate resolution celebrating the 25th anniversary
of Poland's Solidarity movement. In September 2006, she introduced a
resolution recognizing December 13, 2006, as a Day of
Remembrance for the 25th anniversary of the imposition of martial law by the
Communist government in Poland.

Polish troops have been fighting alongside American troops since the start
of the War in Iraq, where 17 Polish soldiers have been killed and more than
20 have been injured. Today, nearly 1,000 Polish troops are still on the
ground in Iraq, and next year Poland will send more than 1,000 troops to
Afghanistan to lead NATO's International Security
Assistance Force.

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Melissa Schwartz
Communications Director
Office of Senator Barbara Mikulski