Representative Jerrold Nadler and Senator Patrick Leahy took some time to reintroduce The Uniting American Families Act today. Yet another attempt to bring queers into the maintstream political fold, the act will allow same-sex partners to sponsor their international lover’s American stay.
Under current law, gays and lesbians must apply for temporary visas and are often denied reentry into the United States— a heartbreaking reality Argentinian director Sebastian Cordoba highlighted in his film Through Thick and Thin.
Speaking to his political peers in the House of Representatives, Nadler explained the act in the most human of terms:
Our bill recognizes that American families come in all shapes and sizes… Our laws should work to keep loving families together and not tear them apart. This is a matter of basic fairness and compassion. I am proud to work with Senator Leahy on this issue. We simply ask that gay and lesbian Americans in loving, committed relationships receive the same treatment as everyone else.
Leahy, meanwhile, hit the nail on the head, “Our immigration laws treat gays and lesbians in committed relationships as second-class citizens; this injustice needs to change.”
If passed, the act will add “permanent partner” to the government’s immigration form. This new category describes persons who are in a steady relationship which “both parties intend a lifelong commitment”
Opponents of the law may argue that individuals can simply lie about being in a relationship – an argument the lawmakers predicted and attempted to defuse by laying out strict punishments:
…If a person is found to have entered into a fraudulent permanent partnership for the purposes of obtaining a visa for another person, they will be subject to the same five year maximum imprisonment, or $250,000 maximum fine, or both, as a person who contracts a fraudulent marriage would.
That sounds reasonable to us.
This needs to pass. Not even in Massachusetts can a gay partner get his partner a green card – even if married.
This is not a special right – we are merely just asking for a chance to be in the same immigration line as a straight couple (one a US citizen and one a foreigner),to be given a chance at an interview for the INS (or ICE) officer to confirm the legitimacy of our relationship. Isn’t it wrong that an american can order a mail order bride and get them a green card, but a gay american DOES NOT have the right to sponsor their partner for one?
Yeah! We love our Senator Leahy!!! Pat – next time you’re in Darnit County – stop by the Hot Damn Trailer Park in Beaver Pond.
Here’s a pix of Sen. Leahy at a Mardi Gras parade in ’04 – that’s him in the middle!
To tell Congress you support the bill, go to:
My sincere thank you for reintroducing UAFA. I’m so hopeful that the hard work of all involved in getting this to Congress are successful. I have been with my husband for nearly 8 years. Although I live in Seattle, I am a Massachusetts resident and married my husband (a wonderful Mexican man) in 2005 in Provincetown. Despite the fact we are legally married in Massachusetts and registered DPs in Washington state, I can not sponser him to become a legal resident in the states. Its just not right! Again, my thank you to all working so hard for us!
A purely symbolic and pointless exercise.
The Chimp-in-Chief will veto it, just like he vetoes everything else the Democratic Congress passes.
This law needs to pass. I have been with my lover for 5 years now, and he can’t get back into the usa. To many people have to move out of this country to be with there loved ones.
Oooops! Here’ s a better link… the first picture is former Vermont Governor, Under Secretary of Education and Ambassador to Switzerland, Madeline Kunin. The middle picture is Senator Leahy. The third picture is of Rich Tarrant, Republican candidate for US Senate in ’06, who spent the most money in US history on a losing senate bid.
Ooops – again! http://houseoflemay.blog-city.com/photo_album_6.htm
Finally, also need this to pass. Preparing to make the choice to stay here in USA or move to a country where i can be with my partner of two years also; we are so behind.
There are 19 (western democratic) countries that I know of that offer recognition of DP’s for immigration purposes. This is no longer a radical idea. It is past due.
Go to http://www.Out4Immigration.org to be part of the solution!
so important to pass this bill, everyone in the USA should be treated equal! being apart is tearing my partner and myself up, its just not fair.
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