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And -- -- -- all the former congressman Jim Colby senior -- transatlantic fellow German Marshall Fund of the US putting two years.
Colby served in the United States House of Representatives.
Elected for seven consecutive terms from 1985 to 2007.
Also serves as a strategic consultant -- McLarty associates.
As a member of the board of directors of freedom house -- a member of the council on foreign relations.
-- with -- -- not but appreciate it very much.
You and testified the other day before the senate judiciary committee to help.
Partners of gay Americans explain what the goal is here.
Well the goal is very simple it's that they can truly do.
Also -- partners are immigrants the same way that.
Opposite sex partner is treated in other words he has that you.
Or somebody else there is somebody from.
Our brand -- from the Columbia or from Thailand and they can immigrate that person to move the United States but.
You can't do -- -- at the same sex partner.
And we lose a lot economically from that -- little -- blog that the testimony from.
Corporations like Microsoft and and others like that and so they've lost significant.
-- valued but people a lot of the higher because they couldn't bring their partners and this is not done anything to do with redefining marriage because of the ordinary can do with the marriage part -- just simply does for immigration proposals.
The US policy -- be significant partner or significant other with a partner would be treated the same and and the rules sport improving from the minute that you are that person noted that that -- and that kind of relationship.
We talked actually tougher than they are sport let's.
And you of course is there to see unfortunately now you are yourself you have a fiance is that correct incorrect and you had to go through some kind of shenanigans.
Mean that's not the right order jump through some hoops.
With your partner tell us what happened.
They jump through hoops is probably have.
To say at about what happened was that it he would come here all -- -- to fellow he was.
I'm very skilled educator and so -- and special bilingual -- talent depth.
Is very much in demand in this country of bilingual special education.
And it taught here for many years but then his green card.
Another screamed out excuse me as a work visa UH one B visa expired can only be removed once and it's good for.
Those six years and then it expired and -- we have to return to Panama we went through a different route.
What's called an investor visa which is not available but the vast majority of people.
Because of the expense about the but -- by making an investment we were able to get a green card form which now happening here in the United States.
In that status these -- we've been here a legal thing.
When you spoke to the gang of eight apparently Lindsey Graham John McCain -- many of those members of that group.
I didn't really addressed the issued and that.
No they didn't they didn't -- -- there but they both said both Lindsay Graham and Jeff Blake my colleagues from the house so in former days in -- house.
But also very nice things about my -- and then Jeff Blake and I work very.
Closely together on drafting the first piece of comprehensive immigration legislation which I must say.
Followed his declined to many of its parts in this bill.
That the gang -- -- has now introduced.
Steve Ralston speaks for immigration equality group that I understand -- -- -- with says you know.
They didn't but the Republicans really didn't respond he says -- -- surely difficult to look them in the eye and tell when this family should be treated as less than under the law.
I think that's right I think it's little hard for them that to do that and they get -- and I think they don't know what they don't really.
Most of them don't feel that this issue is one that's.
That they have a strong -- -- -- about.
Brought -- for reasons of.
I think but I think the many in the -- -- You know we don't necessarily disagree with you but we think this would be to have an effect on other votes to didn't have -- And -- there which is a real issue that it would hurt the reelection chances.
I suppose that's what follow them.
I may be thinking about I'll take all I know I don't think most of them are thinking now I think they will pick somebody else would be thinking that -- -- vote against the bill for that reason.
But the violence against women act passed with similar provisions about -- those -- the same sex couples.
And the violence this kind of violence and there was no protections for same sex people.
And there -- a couple and there was no debate about that on the floor nobody voted against the saint.
The violence against women act because of that so I don't think it's really isn't an issue I think it's kind of a Trojan horse.
Now -- tell you knew a former congressman Jim Colby back in 1996 fewer touted when you voted against the defense of marriage act how upset -- -- about.
The -- turn of events where I've only voted for the defense America.
I didn't vote for that time you know Mary Jordan even on the rise and at that time.
I did -- -- -- in retrospect that looking now where we are today.
It was clearly a mistake to take those federal benefits away from some -- -- I wish I could take that vote that did not that it would have made any difference I think there were.
X 65 votes.
-- -- -- when it passed in the house.
A row how -- -- or you were angry upset when others decided because what they thought you -- -- is hypocritical knowing you were gay but the public didn't know it and they how did you.
What was your reaction to that to what they did.
Always felt that the decision without somebody coming out.
Should be left to the individual that that -- big -- Don't got I mean somebody is not justified -- the most extreme hypocritical circumstances and I had a otherwise perfect voting record on.
On to get gay issues that he -- -- -- -- little -- such issues -- also had never made any statements on the -- so I don't think.
I don't think there was a reason do like beat that I can give you the reasons why -- voted the way I.
-- that I I don't think it's the right thing to do as it turned out I'll be honest with you didn't turn out.
It was the best thing that ever happened to -- you.
Getting -- being honest with us now being honest with myself because two women -- -- to be.
Be able to be yourself.
You in the fourth congressman to identify yourself publicly is gang or Gary Studds and Barney Frank Steve Gunderson a Republican -- -- -- the other two Democrats how difficult is this as a Republican.
Go through this.
Well you know ought to be honest I don't think I ever felt -- -- sort of brought.
Discrimination from my caucus on the on this -- was the next year remain chairman of one of the major appropriations subcommittees.
After I -- meal I won reelection by the exact same margin as I did the year two years before.
So I don't think you'd have a huge effect and I and I was would say I was not all have always been treated.
With respect by my colleagues that doesn't mean that they agree they liked what they would but sometimes -- the lifestyle that's.
Not really I -- now.
But the -- of a better word I guess yeah.
-- lack of them have -- word what.
They they don't agree with the -- the concept but I think it but I've always been treated with respect by the.
It's a shame that because of the times back then people could not be more open I'm sure that lots of pressure not to come out.
People left a little -- look at Jim McGreevey in managers and.
There -- arouses tremendous much more pressure now -- some of those things that.
I looked longingly out today and say fairly young hippie generation today this is truly wonderful.
And I think that's why this issue is is changing as rapidly we're rapidly.
And it is changing.
I don't think there's a civil rights issue in the history of this country that has moved as quickly as -- -- -- the.
I'm Rhode Island -- to be probably the -- state is likely now that the upper chamber.
I think lowered dollars -- senator Rhode Island that actually.
-- voted they were against it looks like the lower chamber will vote for the governor will sign in Rhode Island will become the tenth state to except marriage equality so.
If these Supreme Court overturns.
And Omar -- I think -- Are inclined to do because if they wanted to believe -- to the state level how -- they deny federal benefits.
To somebody who's legally marry in new Yorker or.
-- Rhode Island or wherever it might be worse marriages legal hot and it -- take a federal benefits can apply the couple.
Once that happens it's a cascading effect because.
-- people will go to those states to get married and so -- -- we're moving very here and -- district apartment where -- it's -- have.
-- -- you're not living in Arizona.
I still have my residence there -- -- there I pay my taxes there but most of my work I do here in Washington DC.
Congressman thanks so much for your time is what you do and appreciated somewhat -- much thanks very much former represented Jim Colby of Arizona.
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