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Marco Rubio sips water during the 2013 GOP SOTU response
Marco Rubio draws the line at the gay.
Well, this is pathetic.
Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) has told advocates that he will offer an amendment during the bill markup next week allowing gay Americans to sponsor their foreign-born partners for green cards, just as heterosexual couples can. The measure is likely to pass because Democrats face pressure from gay rights advocates to deal with it in committee, rather than on the Senate floor, where the odds of passage are far less favorable.

But by doing so, Republicans warn that Democrats will tank the whole bill.

“It will virtually guarantee that it won’t pass,” Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), a member of the Gang of Eight negotiating group, told POLITICO in a brief interview. “This issue is a difficult enough issue as it is. I respect everyone’s views on it. But ultimately, if that issue is injected into this bill, the bill will fail and the coalition that helped put it together will fall apart.”

And that, Politico breathlessly intones, is the "most serious threat to bipartisan immigration reform." Funny, I thought it was the Republican House of Representatives.

So, for the record, Republicans (in the Senate, anyway) are ready to pretend like they'll embrace brown people, but aren't quite ready to extend that favor to brown, gay people. They must figure that's just not a significant enough potential voting bloc.

Originally posted to Joan McCarter on Wed May 01, 2013 at 09:28 AM PDT.

Also republished by Invisible People, Milk Men And Women, and Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (28+ / 0-)

    "There’s class warfare, all right, but it’s my class, the rich class, that’s making war, and we’re winning." —Warren Buffett

    by Joan McCarter on Wed May 01, 2013 at 09:28:59 AM PDT

  •  Is the above quote a full quote? (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    rigcath, Eddie L, HappyinNM, JeffW, cactusgal

    Not clear from the context. It seems to me however that if indeed "that issue" is the extent to which Rubio is willing to go in referencing gay and lesbian couples it speaks volumes about the mindset of contemporary Republicans. It would be pathetic if Rubio could not find it in whatever passes for his heart to say the words "gay and lesbian" when speaking on the record. Embracing bigotry to the extent of not even mentioning by name the group of people you refuse to provide equality to seems to be the latest strategy of the haters.

  •  Can someone Hatesplain this to me? (6+ / 0-)
    This issue is a difficult enough issue as it is. I respect everyone’s views on it. But ultimately, if that issue is injected into this bill, the bill will fail and the coalition that helped put it together will fall apart.”
    How does
    "I respect everyone's views on it"
    line up with
    "but if you add anything representing your view (which I respect) to the bill I will fucking kill the amendment, tank the entire bill, move to disband your committee, deport 10 extra brown people for every 1 of teh gayz you even considered allowing to come here, travel to your home state of HomoLoveistan or whatever, kill you, your family, your staff, their families, burn the bodies and plant a huge GOP flag in the smoldering pile of ash and bone just to serve as a reminder to NEVER EVER EVER add an amendment to a bill to express your support for gay people (a view, again, I can certainly respect)."

    Красота спасет мир --F. Dostoevsky

    by Wisper on Wed May 01, 2013 at 09:54:12 AM PDT

    •  You don't think that is slightly overstating? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Zack from the SFV, Calamity Jean

      Actually, it's probably accurate.

      If I ran this circus, things would be DIFFERENT!

      by CwV on Wed May 01, 2013 at 10:35:20 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  You don't think that is slightly overstating? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      joynow

      Actually, it's probably accurate.

      If I ran this circus, things would be DIFFERENT!

      by CwV on Wed May 01, 2013 at 10:36:17 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  How does it line up? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      NCJan

      In the usual way.

      "I respect that you have an opinion, but I hate it and you, so fuck off".

      You know - the GOP standard response to everything.

      I am not religious, and did NOT say I enjoyed sects.

      by trumpeter on Wed May 01, 2013 at 10:57:13 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Same as what they say to women (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Calamity Jean

      The Republican "reaching out" meme applies to immigrants, Hispanics, gays, women, African Americans, you name it.  It's always the same.

      For gays it's like this:  

      "I respect your views on equal rights and equal marriage and adoption, but if you believe that you have a right to control your own body, I will fight you to the death to try to take that right away.

      But please vote for me, because hey, we can all agree to disagree and if you get rich I'll protect your money, right?"

      For women it's like this:

      "I respect your views on birth control and abortion, but if you believe that you have a right to control your own body, I will fight you to the death to try to take that right away.

      But please vote for me, because hey, we can all agree to disagree, and if you get rich I'll protect your money, right?"

      Just because the government keeps a record of real property transfers, it doesn't mean that the government wants to confiscate your home.

      by NCJan on Wed May 01, 2013 at 11:35:44 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  MAKE THEM OWN IT (12+ / 0-)

    Stop not pushing when they say "NO".  MAKE THEN OWN THEIR BIGOTRY.  Against gays. Against women. Against non-whites.  Don't give them the easy out. Don't give them slack.   Don't meet them half-way.  It won't change their votes no matter what you do, so MAKE THEM SHOW THEIR COLORS to everyone.  make decent, vaguely deluded Republicans crince every time they pull that lever, or make them decide to stay home.  No more easy choices.

    Minority rights should never be subject to majority vote.

    by lostboyjim on Wed May 01, 2013 at 10:07:37 AM PDT

  •  I'd love to hear him try to explain WHY (10+ / 0-)

    this is a good enough reason to scuttle the entire immigration reform bill. Is maintaining blatant, arbitrary discrimination in our visa process really that important to them?

    •  It is classic divide and conquer politics. (8+ / 0-)

      Rubio is counting on making Hispanics angry with gay folks for ruining their chances of seeing an immigration bill passed.  It also happens to get Rubio off of the hook - a convenient excuse for not supporting the bill which is not popular amongst the rightwing base of the Republican Party.

      Democrats need to come out in full force and attack the Republicans on all fronts making the case that were they to exclude any citizens from basic rights, it would only give the Republicans leeway to discriminate against many more people than those just in the LGBT community.  They have to make sure that people understand that any allowance for discrimination is ultimately a threat to everyone's rights and make the case for this coalition to stand together.

      •  Agree, inclusiveheart (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        inclusiveheart

        that it would provide an all too convenient truth for republicans to vote against the bill. I hope this issue doesn't torpedo immigration reform; I say this as an open and out lesbian...because it does have the possibility of backlash and dividing the dem. coalition.

        Besides, if the Supreme Court strikes down DOMA, wouldn't the issue be moot?

      •  Meh, I see this totally backfiring on them. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        a2nite, Calamity Jean

        The country is now solidly pro gay marriage. This is one of those issues that will win points for Rubio with the GOP base--and piss off everyone else. I can't see the majority of Americans who support equal marriage just accepting that the immigration bill is dead--or should be dead--because the GOP wants to maintain a policy that outright discriminates against LGBT people.

        •  You miss the point which is that if (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          rigcath, BadKitties

          the immigration bill dies, it dies not because of gay people, but because the Republicans want to maintain their policy of outright discrimination against Hispanic people.  Affirming their anti-gay stance is just an added benefit.

          But that only works if the Hispanic community can be convinced that gay people and not the Republicans are to blame for the immigration bill being scuttled.

          Earlier today it was reported that the bill was dead because it would not pass the House.  Then Rubio comes out and blames gay people - that's deflection and classic divide and conquer strategy.  Placing blame for immigration reform failure anywhere but on the Republican Party is the short-term goal - the long-term goal is to use their lie to poach Hispanic voters that they've lost by claiming that the Democrats betrayed them by including gay folks rights in the immigration bill they were promised.

        •  Not where I am (0+ / 0-)

          ...I don't think you can say the country is solidly pro gay marriage when here in lovely Louisiana, hours-long traffic jams are caused by bigots lining their cars up at the Chick-fil-A drive-thrus (and backing up the streets) to support "traditional marriage" when Mike Huckabee sends out a call.

          Oh my god I can't wait until I'm financially able to GTFO of here.

      •  They're still counting on conservative Hispanics (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        rigcath

        a la the Republican myth - sure, there are SOME but that's not the average Hispanic voter. Fortunately, I think most of the voters they're "trying" to "appeal" to will see through it.

      •  This is the off ramp Rubio feared might not (6+ / 0-)

        be there for him.  He made a token effort to woo Hispanics but is breathing a sigh of relief that he can cling to some kind of bigotry and thereby remain in good standing with his party.  Logcabiners should re-examine their premises.

        Building a better America with activism, cooperation, ingenuity and snacks.

        by judyms9 on Wed May 01, 2013 at 10:52:32 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Rubio's been trying to get off the hook (3+ / 0-)

        Since day one.

        He's grabbing on to every excuse.

        I personally think he's doing to immigration what Olympia Snowe did to the Affordable Care Act.

        Pretend your with it all along, then pull out at the last minute just because.

        Just because the government keeps a record of real property transfers, it doesn't mean that the government wants to confiscate your home.

        by NCJan on Wed May 01, 2013 at 11:38:07 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  It's going to go the other way (0+ / 0-)

      Dems will sacrifice the principle of equality to get something passed.

    •  Problem is... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      RichM

      ...that they'll flip it around -- and that gives the question of whether this is a good enough reason for us to scuttle the entire immigration bill.

      That's not an excuse for accepting bigotry...but it is a preview of how we can expect to see it framed not just by the Republicans, but also by a multitude of pundits and talking heads looking desperately for any examples they can find of "see, both parties do it".

      Political Compass: -6.75, -3.08

      by TexasTom on Wed May 01, 2013 at 10:47:59 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  They wouldn't have trouble with why. Many come (0+ / 0-)

      from states that don't even allow civil unions. Many have an evangelical base who would be all upset about it.
      And one of the old white dudes in senate was talking about the threat of same sex people getting married just for the benefits, even though they aren't really partners. (Which straight people would never do of course). That will be an issue here for the old white dudes.

      This is an important issue but honestly I wish they waited. Immigration reform would be hard enough to get through and this will make them all the more fearful to vote for it or give them a better excuse not to.

  •  Well good for Sen. Leahy at any rate... t (6+ / 0-)

    "This is NOT what I thought I'd be when I grew up."

    by itzik shpitzik on Wed May 01, 2013 at 10:18:06 AM PDT

  •  Those gays ruin everything! (6+ / 0-)

    (snark)

    "Michael Moore, who was filming a movie about corporate welfare called 'Capitalism: A Love Story,' sought and received incentives."

    by Bush Bites on Wed May 01, 2013 at 10:21:22 AM PDT

  •  So the republicans (5+ / 0-)

    are threatening to derail a bill? Right. So im sure they'll instantly stop their everything filibuster the moment we take out the part about gays.

    Theres no way they'd just keep filibustering after getting what they want, right? Its not like thats what they've done every single time since Obama was elected right?

    Right?

    "Trust not the words of a poet, as he is born to seduce. Yet for poetry to seize the heart, it must ring with the chimes of truth."

    by kamrom on Wed May 01, 2013 at 10:23:29 AM PDT

  •  Choke on it, Marco... n/t (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cactusgal, NCJan, Calamity Jean

    Float like a manhole cover, sting like a sash weight! Clean Coal Is A Clinker!

    by JeffW on Wed May 01, 2013 at 10:24:19 AM PDT

  •  GOP is thirsty (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JeffW, cactusgal

    I want 1 less Tiny Coffin, Why Don't You? Support The President's Gun Violence Plan.

    by JML9999 on Wed May 01, 2013 at 10:25:06 AM PDT

  •  "And that, Politico breathlessly intones" (5+ / 0-)

    And that, Politico Tiger Beat of the Potomac breathlessly intones

    I want 1 less Tiny Coffin, Why Don't You? Support The President's Gun Violence Plan.

    by JML9999 on Wed May 01, 2013 at 10:27:47 AM PDT

  •  I've already reach my limit in regard to (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    NCJan, Calamity Jean

    anti-gay, anti-immigrant, anti-anti, etc. When is it going to stop? If you don't want to do immigration reform, just say it. Don't keep putting stupid stumbling blocks in the way, as if they meant anything. Pleeeeeeze, make it stop!!!!

  •  Call Senator Sip on his threat (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite

    Let's see if he's willing to never be President of anything. I wish they would triple double dare him with sprinkles on top.

  •  "That issue" (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    NCJan, Calamity Jean

    Yes, because ripping apart a loving relationship is "that issue."

    Thanks, asshole.

  •  Is anyone surprised by this? Not me! (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    judyms9, a2nite, NCJan, Calamity Jean
  •  I really do worry (0+ / 0-)

    about what will happen to this country when the critical mass of the Coalition of the Ascendant really overtakes our political system in a permanent way.  Will certain kinds of angry and frightened white heterosexual people rise up in some sort of violent separatist movement?  The sheer fear of those who have held power for centuries at the prospect of losing it gives me pause about what is in our future in the near to mid term...

    •  There's certainly a lot of barely stifled hysteria (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      montanamarine, NCJan, Calamity Jean

      out there.  Now the pain experienced by the Native Americans and Mexicans in the SW is being experienced by others.  History strikes back: Live in peace together or live apart with your eyes over your shoulders at all times.  

      Building a better America with activism, cooperation, ingenuity and snacks.

      by judyms9 on Wed May 01, 2013 at 11:00:46 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Now, if theres just some way to blame immigrants (0+ / 0-)

    for not supporting gay marriage, everything will be fine and white white really white all male all the time He-Man Republicans can rule forever.

  •  There good at pretending, NOT (0+ / 0-)
  •  i just knew rubio (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Calamity Jean

    couldn't be trusted when he couldn't remember if he and his family immigrated to the US before or after castro took power, have you straightened that out yet senator because 2016 isn't far off if you get my drift.

  •  Democrats need to (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Calamity Jean

    do what democracy demands; pass good, Democratic legislation. As Lost Boy Jim said-we need to hold the votes and Make. Them. Own. Their. Bigotry.

    With the current state of congress immigration reform has no chance of passing the House, unless the bill voted on includes plenty of punitive provisions for immigrants.

  •  If the Supreme Court overturns DOMA, (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Calamity Jean

    wouldn't that make Leahy's amendment moot?  The feds wouldn't have the ability to discriminate against gay married couples in that case, which just mean "partners" would have to be married before one could sponsor the other.  Currently,  a heterosexual "partner" is not allowed to sponsor the other, at least under the family provision, so what's the difference?

    "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

    by SueDe on Wed May 01, 2013 at 12:10:42 PM PDT

  •  Republicans have re-branded themselves... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JeffW

    ...the "Xe Generation".
    Xe: pronounced Zee, sounds like Me, stands for Xenophobia.

    And they scream... The worst things in life come free to us... Cause we're just under the upper hand... And go mad for a couple grams.

    by glb3 on Wed May 01, 2013 at 12:39:53 PM PDT

    •  Wasn't "Xe" the interim new name for (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JeffW

      the mercenaries formerly known as "Blackwater"?  I find it amusing that "blackwater" is a plumbers' term for water containing fecal matter.  

      Renewable energy brings national global security.     

      by Calamity Jean on Wed May 01, 2013 at 08:08:38 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  That's what they said about sex discrim (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Calamity Jean

    When the 1964 Civil Rights Act was going through Congress, some bright bulb suggested adding "sex" to the list of criteria on which discrimination would be illegal -- the theory being that it was so ridiculous that it would kill the entire bill. (This was pretty much before the main wave of the women's movement.)

    Instead, the bill passed, thanks to arm-twisting by LBJ and others, and the sex discrimination provisions proved to be among the most popular and most used.

  •  No reason for Democrats NOT to hold firm (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Calamity Jean

    Isn't it the REPUBLICANS who need to move on the immigration issue? It really irritates me to see Democrats constantly backpedaling - on a border-enforcement trigger, on legalization, & now on LGBT couples. What I fear is that we will end up with a bill that is heavy on enforcement but weak & provisional on legalization & pathways to citizenship, & with LGBT couples left out in the cold. What Senate Democrats should do is offer up a good bill & dare the Republicans to vote against it.

    If Republicans tank this bill, it is THEY who will have to answer for it to Latino voters, not Democrats, not LGBTs. The Republican base was never going to buy into comprehensive immigration reform anyway. The party's leadership may understand the demographic time-bomb awaiting them, but their rank & file legislators are going to vote against it no matter what. The LGBT issue may offer them a convenient reason, but if it isn't in the bill they'd find another reason to vote no.

    Immigration reform, IF it passes (that's a huge if), will get there overwhelmingly with Democratic votes. So why should Democrats put up a bill designed primarily to appease Republicans? Why not include LGBTs & dare Marco Rubio to vote against his own bill? Let them explain why they had to block immigration reform "because of those damned dirty homosexuals".

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