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Three Out Democrats Helped GOP House Pass Syrian Refugee Limits

Three Out Democrats Helped GOP House Pass Syrian Refugee Limits

Three Out Democrats Helped GOP House Pass Syrian Refugee Limits
Jared Polis Sean Maloney and Kyrsten Sinema

The House said no to Syrian immigrants in a vote over a controversial bill.

When the House of Representatives passed a bill Thursday that suspends a program allowing Syrian and Iraqi refugees into the United States, three out lawmakers joined other Democrats who sided with Republicans.

The bill, which would still need Senate approval, comes widespread security panic following terroristic bombings and shootings in Paris. Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid said he will try to block the bill, according to CNN. But the majority in the House was large enough that it could override President Obama's promised veto if it got to his desk.

The bill passed 289-137, according to CNN. And 47 Democrats including gay congressmen Jared Polis (CO-02) and Sean Maloney (NY-18), plus bisexual congresswoman Kyrsten Sinema (AZ-09) joining 242 Republicans in favor. The LGB vote in Congress was split, with three other out lawmakers opposing it -- David Cicilline (RI-01), Mark Takano (CA-41), and Mark Pocan (WI-02).

Polis explained his support for the bill by saying he felt screening of refugees that is in place now needs improvement.

"I think we should pair (a policy of) increasing the number of refugees that we allow with more effective and better ways of vetting refugees," he told the Denver Post.

At least 26 governors across the United States have refused to accept Syrian refugees since the Paris attacks, with some, such as Republican presidential hopeful Chris Christie of New Jersey, blaming his stance on lacking security protocols.

"I do not trust this administration to effectively vet the people who are proposed to be coming in," the New Jersey governor and presidential hopeful said in an interview Monday with radio host Hugh Hewitt.

Asked if he would make an exception for "orphans under the age of 5," Christie said no.

The New York Times recently wrote of one Syrian family that was supposed to travel to Indiana but instead had to be re-routed to Connecticut after Indiana Governor Mike Pence said he would no longer accept refugees into his state. Pence is known for creating a less than hospitible climate for LGBT visitors to his state with the "religious freedom" bill which allowed businesses to deny service to LGBT patrons.

However in Oregon, out bisexual governor Kate Brown joined several other governors in expressing her willingness to welcome refugees to her state. "The words on the Statue of Liberty apply in Oregon just as they do in every other state," she wrote on Facebook. "Clearly, Oregon will continue to accept refugees - they bring their hopes and dreams to America, and we will continue to welcome them and open the doors of opportunity."

Advocate Magazine - KehlaniAdvocate Magazine - Gus Kenworthy

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