According to a new poll, 64% of Latinos think that lesbians and gays should have the right to sponsor a partner who may be an immigrant for residency in the United States of America. From the poll, the support for gay sponsoring of immigrant partners including voters from different religious backgrounds with 71% involving Catholics and 53% percent involving born-again Christians. Also supporting this idea are 63% U.S. born citizens and 65% foreign-born Latino voters.
Latino Decisions, a political opinion research team headed by professors of political science who employ analytical expertise to produce the most accurate information about Latino political attitudes, and Immigration Equality, a national organization devoted to fighting for equality under U.S. immigration for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and HIV-positive individuals, joined together to produce these current findings. Executive director of Immigration Equality, Rachel B. Tiven commented on the poll’s finding.
“Latino Voters, like most voters, see family as family, whether gay or straight. These results underscores that an inclusive bill will have broad and deep support among people of faith. While some are using scare tactics about border security and LGBT community to distract from common-sense reform, our poll shows those tactics are nothing more than fear mongering.”
It is estimated that 30% of the over 900,000 adult immigrants living in the U.S identify themselves as being undocumented lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender individuals. Out of this estimation, 71% are Latino. A report from the Williams Institute of Law at UCLA, found that over 48,000 adults who are in a same-sex consists of one or both partners being non- U.S citizens.
Dr. Gary J. Gates of the Williams Institute of Law comments how, “Under the current immigration policies, many of these couples, along with the 24,000 children they are raising, may face separation if same-sex spouses or partners are not able to sponsor each other for a work vista.”
Currently, the issue regarding whether gay families will be included in the current plans to reform the country’s immigration legislation is being debated in Congress.
Florida Republican Senator Marco Rubio said on the matter, “I think that issue (gay rights) becomes a central issue in the debate it’s going to become harder to get it done because there will be strong feelings on both sides.”
Also commenting on how the issue of including gay families into the immigration reform may hinder its process is Republican Senator John McCain who said, “If you load this up with social issues and things that are controversial, it will endanger the issue.”
However, for Latino Decisions political scientist Sylvia Manzano the poll information suggests that voters—particularly young voters—view it differently than the senators.
“The broader point about sexual identity is that it is not really a big sticking point for the Latino electorate, and this is important for the politicians to consider,” Manzano adds that, “for the American electorate, the younger the age, the more voters are favorable to same-sex marriage and LGBT equality, and we have to remember Latinos are a young population.”
What Manzano suggests makes sense considering that 64% is considerably more than half, and as “more of these younger people become part of the voting electorate, it’s not a good strategy to pick on non-straight couples,” adds Manzano, providing some wise advice to any political figurehead who may be reading.
The future of this country’s decision may be argued by Senators during its voting process, but in the end it’s the youth who come forth and vote on what they want and feel is right in the end.