AJR 15 -California on its way in Support of UAFA

Gina Capiro, Amos Lim, Assembly Member Kevin de Leon, Melanie Nathan
Gina Capiro, Amos Lim, Assembly Member Kevin de Leon, Melanie Nathan

Today, together with Gina Capiro, I had the great honor of providing testimony on behalf of the thousands of binational same-sex partners, for Resolution AJR 15 which in essence will serve to provide California‘s legislature’s support of the Uniting American Families Act and equality in the immigration laws of the US, for same-sex permanent partners. 

A victory for our issue and at the same time a lesson in the divisiveness of ‘party-lines.’  It was astounding to witness; to tell the personal story of my family’s hardship with this inequality, about how I was faced with a possible choice between my two daughters, because  I could not petition for my same-sex spouse to remain in the US in the same was a straight American could; and then to hear the Republican’s, “nay” regardless of the hardship to their fellow Americans.  They just did not care about the 36,000 binational couples out there – ! 

jeff MillerIn fact one of the members  of the Committee Jeff Miller- (R- 71st Assembly District, which takes in much of Western Riverside County and the Eastern edge of Orange County,)  stated that he wanted everyone to know why he was voting ‘no’ on all three LGBT Resolutions in the committee. He was doing it because he said that “California has decided ….”  Referring to Prop 8; of course did not end his sentence; the incomplete implication  – ‘California has decided that gays do not count – their families and their de facto lives are invalid. ‘  He then went on to say, how his constituents and the rest who believe in the Defense of Marriage Act would be and I quote “hurt” if gays were recognized in this way.   In piecing his statement together, I think he was referring to a “NOTION” – the notion of marriage being between one man and one woman  – if that were undermined then his constituents would be hurt.   Well – it was clear to me -that the gentleman, who by the way also has two daughters – mmm wonder what he would feel if he had to choose between them?)  was in absolute lock-step; no compassion, no heart, just the “PARTY.” Need I say more?

 Shows pure ignorance on the issue – UAFA is legislation that has nothing to do with marriage per se; if anything it will grant a special right in recognition of DOMA as a restriction to LGBT ability to Petition under the immigration Law.

So thanks to the Author and co sponsors of AJR 15, and to  Alice Kessler of EQCA for her amazing work. We are really lucky to have her doing what she does for us.  Seeing her in action today on three issues, I can only imagine all the work that must have gone into the day. Also to Amos for of Out4Immigration who had much to do with promoting the authoring of this Resolution and to Gina for her very moving testimony and the volunteer work she does for our community.  Also thanks to Out4Immigration for all their work fighting forequality in immigration.

 Letters received today – from Amos Lim to Out4Immigration Members and Alice Kessler, EQCA:-

Hello all,

I just wanted to report to our friends on the listserv that AJR 15 passed the Assembly Judiciary Committee this morning by a 6-3 party line vote!

I want to especially thank Melanie, Gina and Amos for coming to the hearing in person. Your stories were courageous and compelling, and a good reminder of why we keep fighting the good fight. Hopefully we’ll soon move our nation’s discriminatory immigration laws into the dustbin of history.

Thanks again for your inspiring work!

-Alice

Alice Kessler
Government Affairs Director
Equality California :: Equality California Institute
Find out more about EQCA’s current legislation
http://www.eqca.org/legislation/2008 

From Amos Lim:

Hi Folks,

I just came back from Sacramento to attend the California Assembly Judiciary 
Committee hearing and to show that Out4Immigration supports Assembly 
Joint Resolution 15  which puts CA on record as supporting the passage 
of Uniting American Families Act as well as supporting the inclusion 
of UAFA in Reuniting Families Act.

The judiciary committee heard the testimony of Gina Capiro, who 
actually just landed on US soil this morning at 2am with her partner, 
and Melanie Nathan. The committee also heard comments from 
organizations in support of the bill, which included EQCA (Equality 
California – the sponsor of the bill), AACRE (Asian American for Civil 
Rights and Equality), California Immigrant Policy Center (CIPC), 
Out4Immigration and a few other organizations.

There were 4 resolutions being heard today  and 3 of them are LGBT 
bills.  Of the 3 LGBT bills, one of them is to remove the ban on gay 
man donating blood, the second is Supporting the passage of UAFA and 
the third is urging congress to repeal DOMA.

We have very positive feedback from the Democrats on the judiciary 
committee and Gina’s and Melanie’s testimony was so compelling that 
when all the witnesses spoke in support of the bill (there were no 
opposition organization present), Assemblyman Davy Jones just 
indicated that the story breaks his heart and it is wrong for the 
government to do this to same sex couples and he immediately ask for 
the committee to vote for the bill and send it to the floor.

The vote was 6 – 3, and the 3 who objected were all Republicans.  No 
surprise there.

The joint resolutions will be send to the floor for a vote soon and we 
are sure it will passed.  The next step is to have the senate take up 
the same resolution and pass it.

It is therefore important now to get more organizations to support 
this resolution and have them send in a letter of support.  If you 
want to help us get more organizations to write letter of support, 
please contact me at amos@out4immigration.org

Many thanks to Gina for braving little sleep and for providing such a 
touching testimony about the struggles she and her partner are going 
through…  Thanks to Melanie too for her testimony and for her work 
on this issue.

Cheers,
Amos Lim, Treasurer & Founding Board Member
amos@out4immigration.org
415.742.1626 (new number)

 

IRONY-DU-JOUR taken from Republican Assemblymember JEFF MILLER’S Website – for the 71st District –
jeff miller logoWhere they care about families and children – they keep kids safe – UNLESS their parents are gay!

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3 thoughts on “AJR 15 -California on its way in Support of UAFA

  1. Current Elected Office Contact Information

    Contact Asm. Jeff Miller via Web Form.

    Website: republican.assembly.ca.gov/member/71/

    Sacramento Office:

    3147 State Capitol,
    California 95814
    Phone: (916) 319-2071
    Fax: (916) 319-2171

    Mission Viejo Office: (more district offices)

    20532 El Toro Road, Suite 203
    CONTACT MILLER and tell him you disapprove of his comments
    Mission Viejo, California 92692
    Phone: (949) 598-7171
    Fax: (949) 598-7170
    Mission Viejo Office:
    20532 El Toro Road, Suite 203
    Mission Viejo, California 92692
    Phone: (949) 598-7171
    Fax: (949) 598-7170

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