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Russia's president to ban U.S. adoptions

Adoption Ban

PALM DESERT, Calif. - "My wife and I, we wanted a healthy baby boy or a healthy baby girl," said Joshua Stratton of Desert Hot Springs.

On November 9, a 6-pound, 15-ounce baby boy was born in Riverside. Eleven days later, Stratton, one of our Gulf California Broadcast employees, and his wife Laurie met their new son, Logan Guy Edwin Stratton, for the first time.

"It's our baby. I'm getting goose bumps right now but it's the most, it's the best feeling in the world," he said.

The couple and their 5-year-old daughter spent 18 months searching for their new love. The Stratton's ultimately chose adoption within the U.S.

Each year thousands of Americans adopt children from other countries. Russia remains the third most popular country, after China and Ethiopia.

U.S. State Department figures show Americans have welcomed more than 60,000 Russian children in the past 20 years. Close to 1,000 were adopted last year alone.

The adoptions will soon come to a halt as Russia's President Vladimir Putin says he will sign a controversial bill banning American families from adopting Russian orphans.
"They don't have homes and to take that away, take the possible home away from a child who is brand new to this world, is asinine," said Statton.

The ban by Russian politicians is believed to be retaliation for a law that U.S. President Barack Obama signed this month, which imposes U.S. travel and financial restrictions on human rights abusers in Russia. Some critics warn that suspending U.S. adoptions is playing politics with children and the families looking to take them in.

"Americans are the people of such a giving country. For us to want to give a child from a different country a home and for you to tell me that I can't do that, or give any child a home, is just ridiculous," said Stratton.

The legislation could affect hundreds of American families seeking adoption in Russia and unfortunately freeze the cases for those kids close to getting new parents.

The bill is expected to be signed by President Putin in the coming days.

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