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  • 08/27/2013 12:30 PM | American Families United (Administrator)
    American Families United expresses our heartfelt thanks to Congressman Beto O'Rourke, who attended the wedding of American Families United members Edgar Falcon and Maricruz Valtierra today at the Santa Fe international border bridge in El Paso, Texas. 

    Despite their marriage, Edgar cannot live in the United States with his wife Maricruz.  Congressman O'Rourke remarked, "It is a fundamental principle of American values that the US government has no right to tell any citizen to choose between their spouse, the love of their life – and their country. Yet that is what current law does."  Congressman O'Rourke also announced that he will introduce the American Families United Act, a bill with the specific intent of helping US citizens like Edgar. 

    American Families United applauds Congressman O'Rourke for his leadership in championing the rights of US citizens.
  • 06/27/2013 10:23 PM | American Families United (Administrator)
    The Senate today passed an historic, sweeping bi-partisan immigration bill, S 744, by a vote of 68-32, providing a glimmer of hope to thousands of US citizens living in exile or separated from their loved ones.

    This is first time in recent memory that a comprehensive immigration reform bill has included US citizens.  Previous versions of comprehensive immigration reform, by focusing on the undocumented population in the US independently of any potential US citizens who may have sponsored them, have actually left the husbands, wives, and children of these American families out.

    S 744 includes legislation that would allow immigration judges to weigh the nature of the immigration violation against the damage to US citizens whose families are outlawed or exiled by current law.  The bill also includes provisions to solve a variety of other issues that separate nuclear families.

    “This is very encouraging,” stated American Families United Vice President Dana Forrester.  “I pray that the House of Representatives will pick up where the Senate left off to do the right thing for our families.”

    The House will take up the issue of immigration reform in the coming weeks, but it is not clear if their bill will address the needs of U.S. citizens.

    “This is the time, more than ever, for US citizens to meet with their Congressman or Congresswoman and ask that the interests of citizens be included in any bill that can pass this congress, ” said Randall Emery, President of American Families United.

  • 06/11/2013 5:00 PM | American Families United (Administrator)
    The Senate passed a motion to proceed on immigration bill S 744 with a vote of 82-15.  This is another victory for nuclear families, clearing the way for the bill to move forward.

    Individual Senators have filed amendments and will debate those amendments over the next few weeks.  Amendments will need 60 votes to pass.  Around the country, members of American Families United are meeting with the offices of Senators who may support the bill to ask that nuclear family provisions be protected.

    An amended bill is expected to be voted on as a whole by July 4th.

  • 06/11/2013 5:00 PM | American Families United (Administrator)

    Uvalda, Georgia Mayor Paul Bridges, a prominent American Families United member, was part of a delegation gathered in the White House Tuesday morning as President Obama urged passage of immigration legislation in the U.S. Congress.

    Mayor Bridges received a call from the White House earlier in the week inviting him to the presidential event and offering him a seat on the platform behind the President during his address.  Before the speech, invitee’s gathered in the Blue Room to shake hands and exchange pleasantries with the President.  The President addressed the group, reminding them that getting immigration reform passed won’t be easy, but will be worth it in the long run.    

    After the event, the mayor lobbied on Capitol Hill, reminding legislators and white house staffers of the need to protect sections 2314 and 2315 of the Senate bill.  

    “I came away with the full knowledge that our individual stories are the most powerful weapons we can use,” stated Mayor Bridges after the experience.  

    His advice to American Families United members:  “Tell your story. Find a way for ‘them’ to listen. I am confident that there will be a bill on the president’s desk and what it looks like will be determined by how successful we are at getting our stories told.”
  • 05/21/2013 9:00 PM | American Families United (Administrator)
    In a resounding win for nuclear families, the Senate judiciary committee voted 13-5 to advance S 744 to the Senate floor.  During the committee markup process, several amendments were filed to attack nuclear provisions, but these provisions were either defeated or not offered.

    "We applaud the the group of eight, Chairman Leahy, and those Senators who voted for the bill to advance to the Senate floor," said Randall Emery, president of American Families United. "We urge the Senate to ensure that new laws respect old values of marriage and family, and stand with US citizens as amendments are filed and the bill comes to a final vote."
  • 05/12/2013 7:13 AM | American Families United (Administrator)
    In celebration of Mother's Day, we are offering 50% off membership with the discount code "MOM" all this week.  This discount ends Saturday, May 18th.

    We have had a very successful year so far, with big victories for our families in the Senate bill that is currently moving through the Senate judiciary markup process.  We are also working steadily on the House to raise the concerns of nuclear families.  But our fight is not over and we still need to remain active by bringing in new members and voices.
  • 04/17/2013 3:00 PM | American Families United (Administrator)
    American Families United applauds Senators Menendez, Schumer, Rubio, Bennet, Durbin, Flake, McCain, and Graham for introducing an historic bi-partisan comprehensive immigration bill that includes judicial discretion to waive inadmissibilities for US citizen families.  US citizens who have sponsored their spouses through the existing legal immigration system, but are now separated or living in exile, are supported.

    “This is a big day for my family,” stated NJ resident American Families United member Margot Bruemmer, who is currently living in exile in Mexico with her barred spouse.  “Our lobbying efforts have paid off--Senator Menendez and the others have listened to our pleas for help for our suffering families.”

    The bill also recognizes legal permanent residents' spouses and children as immediate relatives, which has long been an issue high on American Families United’s priority list.  Other victories include visitor visas for families members who have been sponsored for immigration, as well as fixes to problems when sponsoring step children.

    “This bill is an opportunity to fix many long-standing problems that contradict the basic values of marriage and family,” stated Randall Emery, President of American Families United “and we urge the Senate to protect these provisions and move quickly to pass them.”

    American Families United’s advocacy goals will now shift to protecting nuclear family provisions in the Senate and working for similar provisions in the House.  Meetings with Senators and Members of Congress will continue.
  • 04/12/2013 3:08 PM | American Families United (Administrator)
    On Wednesday, April 10th, American Families United members stormed Capitol Hill along with thousands of other immigration advocates.  The message they delivered was to reunite separated families and to bring exiled families back home.  

    Members took advantage of their time in DC to attend meetings with the offices of several Senators and Members of Congress on the 10th, 11th, and 12th, and felt the support growing on Capitol Hill for our waiver reform.

    “I received overwhelming positive feedback from the new offices we visited” stated Allyson, Philadelphia Chapter President, “and feel that we are inching closer to our goal.”

  • 04/04/2013 3:22 PM | American Families United (Administrator)
    American Families United Secretary Steven Zaharakis was personally invited April 3rd to an immigration roundtable with Senator Boxer and 20+ other organizations interested in working towards comprehensive immigration reform.

    Secretary Steven Zaharakis mentions "We are very happy that Senator Boxer has offered to make her focus two key areas once a bill is released: 'Women and Family'. American Families United applauds Senator Boxer's strong ideals that family is a key issue in this debate. We look forward to working with her once a bill is released to make sure family reunification for US Citizens is not left out."

  • 04/03/2013 3:14 PM | American Families United (Administrator)
    Earlier today, American Families United submitted a letter to Congressional leadership asking for common sense judicial discretion in admitting the spouses of US citizens.  

    An impressive list of 30 organizations, from a range of political views and parts of the country signed on in support separated and exiled US citizen families:



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Randall Emery, President


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