After serving 22 years as a representative for Arizona, former Congressman Jim Kolbe is making a plea to his former coworkers to allow him and his partner of eight years the same rights as straight couples.
According to Politico, Kolbe was in Washington earlier this week to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee about the need to include gay couples in pending immigration reform legislation. Kolbe is planning to wed his partner Hector Alfonso on May 18. Alfonso is a citizen of Panama, and is not eligible for citizenship sponsored by Kolbe because of provisions in the Defense of Marriage Act.
GOProud’s Jimmy LaSalvia said it’s important for the former GOP member to show how the decisions made in Washington really do affect everyone.
“It’s always good to show how issues affect people personally, and Congressman Kolbe can show how this issue impacts the life of one of their former colleagues,” LaSalvia said. “He can personalize this issue for members of Congress like nobody else can.”
A compromised immigration reform bill was introduced in the Senate last week, but the measure did not include language that would add protections for the roughly 35,000 bi-national same-sex couples living in the U.S., according to GayPolitics.