Evangelicals: Keep gay issues out of immigration

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Associated Press

Posted on May 8, 2013 at 11:03 AM

Updated Wednesday, May 8 at 11:07 AM

WASHINGTON (AP) — Religious leaders are warning that including a gay rights amendment in a sweeping immigration bill could cost their support for the legislation.

Richard Land, a leader of the Southern Baptist Convention, told reporters on a conference call Wednesday that evangelicals are hopeful the bill will remain focused on immigration and steer clear of gay rights. But if gay rights does become part of the bill, he said, the Southern Baptist Convention will no longer be able to support it.

Other religious leaders issued similar warnings.

It comes as the Senate Judiciary Committee prepares to take up the landmark bill on Thursday. Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy of Vermont is considering offering an amendment that would allow gay couples to sponsor their partners for U.S. residence like other married Americans can.

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