Thursday, May 9, 2013


Immigration Reform: NY's Schumer worries about resolving LGBT issues in immigration bill
J. Scott Applewhite  The Associated Press
Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y. (L) confers with Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn.
By Brody Levesque | WASHINGTON -- As the Senate Judiciary Committee met Thursday, holding a hearing on the comprehensive immigration reform bill, New York Democrat Chuck Schumer expressed concerns over whether or not the final draft of the measure would contain protections for foreign-born partners of gay, lesbian and bisexual American citizens.
Judiciary Committee Chairman, Sen. Patrick Leahy, (D-VT) has proposed including language from the Uniting American Families Act (UAFA) – which would allow the foreign-born partners of gay, lesbian and bisexual U.S. citizens to apply for green card status – into the legislation as an amendment. Schumer who along with Florida Republican Senator Marco Rubio and six other lawmakers crafted the bipartisan bill, told reporters;
“This one is something, you know, I worry about all the time.” Schumer also acknowledged that the issue over including same-sex bi-national partners keeps him awake at night even though he’s a “good sleeper.” 
“Our four Democratic colleagues – including myself – believe that this is not just another issue but an issue of discrimination and so how we resolve this remains to be seen,” he added.
Senate Republicans in the bipartisan Gang of Eight along with their Senate colleagues have publicly indicated that they would not support same-sex couples having the same protections as heterosexual spouses in the final legislation. Schumer himself would not confirm to reporters if he would vote for the amendment should it be included;
“I would like very much to see it in the bill,” he said. “But we have to have a bill that has support to get UAFA passed. That's the conundrum. because if there's no bill, there's no UAFA either."