News / USA

Washington Week: Focus on Immigration Reform, Benghazi

Washington Week: Focus on Immigration Reform, Benghazi Attacki
X
May 05, 2013
The U.S. Congress reconvenes after a week-long recess to continue work on immigration reform and to delve once again into last year’s terrorist attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports.

Washington Week: Focus on Immigration Reform, Benghazi Attack

TEXT SIZE - +
Michael Bowman
— The U.S. Congress reconvenes after a week-long recess to continue work on immigration reform and to delve once again into last year’s terrorist attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya.

A push to overhaul U.S. immigration laws has been gaining momentum in the Senate, where a bipartisan reform bill was unveiled last month.  This week, senators could decide whether the bill extends equal protections to homosexual immigrants whose relationships are not recognized under current federal law.

Last week, President Barack Obama spoke in favor of gay-inclusive immigration reform. “The LGBT [lesbian-gay-bisexual-transgendered] community should be treated like everybody else.  To me, that is the essential core principle behind our founding documents - the idea that we are all created equal," he said.

The issue?  Gay Americans cannot sponsor a foreign spouse for U.S. residency and eventual citizenship.  Bi-national married gay couples, like American Heather Morgan and Spaniard Maria del Mar Verdugo, could be torn apart at any time.

“We have that complete uncertainty and the idea that at a moment’s notice, Maria could be forced to leave," she said.

But some Republican lawmakers warn against injecting gay rights into immigration reform, saying to do so would put the entire bill in jeopardy.  The Senate Judiciary Committee is expected to consider the issue when it meets later this week.

Meanwhile, the terrorist attack that killed four Americans - including the ambassador - in Benghazi, Libya will be examined once again by an oversight committee in the House of Representatives.  Republicans like Darrell Issa remain dissatisfied with the Obama administration’s explanations of its actions before and after the assault.

“We need to operate in a country like Libya erring on the side of security," he said.

Tuesday, President Obama will receive South Korean President Park Geun-hye at the White House.  The visit follows a period of dramatically-escalated tensions surrounding North Korea, and amid a reassessment of America’s security posture in the Asia-Pacific region.

You May Like

Wikipedia Proves Useful for Tracking Flu

Technique gave better results than Center for Disease Control (CDC) and Google’s Flu Trends More

Turkish Law Gives Spy Agency Controversial Powers

Parliament approves legislation to bolster powers of intelligence service, which government claims is necessary to modernize and deal with new threats Turkey faces More

Video Face of American Farmer Changing

Average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Face of American Farmer is Changingi
X
Mike Osborne
April 18, 2014
The average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population. It’s a troubling trend signaling big changes ahead for American agriculture as aging farmers retire. Reporter Mike Osborne says a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau is suggesting what some of those changes might look like... and why they might not be so troubling.
Video

Video Face of American Farmer is Changing

The average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population. It’s a troubling trend signaling big changes ahead for American agriculture as aging farmers retire. Reporter Mike Osborne says a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau is suggesting what some of those changes might look like... and why they might not be so troubling.
Video

Video Donetsk Governor: Ukraine Military Assault 'Delicate But Necessary'

Around a dozen state buildings in eastern Ukraine remain in the hands of pro-Russian protesters who are demanding a referendum on self-rule. The governor of the whole Donetsk region is among those forced out by the protesters. He spoke to VOA's Henry Ridgwell from his temporary new office in Donetsk city.
Video

Video Drones May Soon Send Data From High Seas

Drones are usually associated with unmanned flying vehicles, but autonomous watercraft are also becoming useful tools for jobs ranging from scientific exploration to law enforcement to searching for a missing airliner in the Indian Ocean. VOA’s George Putic reports on sea-faring drones.
Video

Video New Earth-Size Planet Found

Not too big, not too small. Not too hot, not too cold. A newly discovered planet looks just right for life as we know it, according to an international group of astronomers. VOA’s Steve Baragona has more.
Video

Video Copts in Diaspora Worry About Future in Egypt

Around 10 percent of Egypt’s population belong to the Coptic faith, making them the largest Christian minority in the Middle East. But they have become targets of violence since the revolution three years ago. With elections scheduled for May and the struggle between the Egyptian military and Islamists continuing, many Copts abroad are deeply worried about the future of their ancient church. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky visited a Coptic church outside Washington DC.
Video

Video Critics Say Venezuelan Protests Test Limits of Military's Support

During the two months of deadly anti-government protests that have rocked the oil-rich nation of Venezuela, President Nicolas Maduro has accused the opposition of trying to initiate a coup. Though a small number of military officers have been arrested for allegedly plotting against the government, VOA’s Brian Padden reports the leadership of the armed forces continues to support the president, at least for now.
Video

Video More Millenials Unplug to Embrace Board Games

A big new trend in the U.S. toy industry has more consumers switching off their high-tech gadgets to play with classic toys, like board games. This is especially true among the so-called millenial generation - those born in the 1980's and 90's. Elizabeth Lee has more from an unusual café in Los Angeles, where the new trend is popular and business is booming.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
AppleAndroid