Senate Talks LGBT Immigration
BY Kerry Eleveld
June 02 2009 11:00 PM ET
"Every time U.S. citizens deal with extra cost, congestion, sprawl, or other deterioration in quality of life due to explosive population growth, they can thank one Congress after another that has either raised immigration numbers or maintained the new higher levels," Beck said.
Vaughan argued against UAFA on the basis that it would be very difficult to verify legitimate same-sex sponsors since most cannot present marriage certificates. "There is no mechanism to officially recognize or sanction 'permanent partnerships,'" she said. "If the goal is to give same-sex long-term partners equal access to immigration benefits, then the target should be the Defense of Marriage Act, not the Immigration and Nationality Act."
The White House is expected to hold a summit on comprehensive immigration reform in the next couple of weeks, and officials at Immigration Equality, the lead organization lobbying for LGBT binational families, said the UAFA hearing Wednesday was a sign that Democratic leadership is serious about the legislation.
"The timing is no accident," said Steve Ralls, Immigration Equality's director of communications. "This is a strong signal from Senator Leahy that, as the chairman of the committee of jurisdiction, he wants this to be included in comprehensive immigration reform."
The group's executive director, Rachel B. Tiven, added that they are pushing hard for LGBT inclusion in the larger debate. "We are fighting like hell to keep gay and lesbian families where they belong, which is within comprehensive immigration reform," she said.
- Buck Angel Shuts Down Transgender Surgery Fundraising Site
- PHOTOS: 6 Couples Australia's High Court Says Aren't Married Anymore
- WATCH: Right Wing Swoons Over Antigay Colo. Baker Ready to Go to Jail for Jesus
- Blogger: Salvation Army No Friend to LGBT Folks
- WATCH: Trailer for the Wachowskis' Jupiter Ascending Premieres Online
- PHOTOS: India's Supreme Court Reinstates Sodomy Ban
- Marriage Equality Australia's High Court Says These Couples Aren't Married 2 hours 3 min ago
- Women Meet Gender Scientist Anne Fausto-Sterling 2 hours 57 min ago
- Women WATCH: Michelle Chamuel Returns to The Voice with 'Go Down Singing' 7:10 PM
- Politics Mich. Governor Condemns RNC Member's Latest Antigay Remark 7:01 PM
- Marriage Equality WATCH: Right Wing Swoons Over Antigay Baker 6:45 PM
- Travel What Airline Scored 100% on HRC's Corporate Equality Index? 6:44 PM
- Entertainment News The Queer Quotient at the SAG Awards 6:03 PM