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Philomena Lee, an Irish woman whose search for the son that she gave up for adoption in the 1950’s, and is now a Hollywood film, meets with Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo. on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Jan. 30, 2014. With her life story now the subject of an Oscar-nominated film, Philomena Lee is calling for government reforms, in Ireland and the U.S., that would grant adopted people access to adoption files. (AP Photo)
Movie subject Philomena Lee helps U.S. lawmaker push adoption rights
First Published Jan 30 2014 11:09 am • Last Updated Jan 30 2014 11:09 am

Washington • Philomena Lee wistfully described her search for her son 50 years after his adoption, a quest captured in an Oscar-nominated film.

Missouri Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill said Lee’s experience was an argument for adoption rights and an incentive for Ireland to open its records.

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The two women met Thursday and spoke to reporters about the Philomena Project and efforts to reconcile families. They were joined by Lee’s daughter, Jane Libberton, who helped in the search.

The movie starring Judi Dench has drawn attention to Lee’s story and what transpired in Ireland for decades. Children were adopted by Americans, and their birth mothers were unable to find out what happened to them.

Lee said weeks ago she was a housewife — now she’s on daytime television and will be attending the Oscars.




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