Senators demand hold on deportation of same-sex partners until Supreme Court ruling

“We urge DHS to hold marriage-based immigration petitions in abeyance until the Supreme Court issues its ruling on same-sex marriage. Holding these cases in abeyance for a few months will prevent hardship to LGBT immigrant families,” the senators wrote. 

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“We also call upon the Department of Justice to institute a moratorium on orders of removal issued by the immigration courts to married foreign nationals who would be otherwise eligible to adjust their status to lawful permanent resident but for DOMA. By taking these interim steps, vulnerable families affected by DOMA can remain together until the Supreme Court issues its decision.”

Under DOMA, federal immigration benefits do not extend to same-sex couples. First and 2nd circuit federal appeals courts have deemed DOMA unconstitutional — the Supreme Court will take the issue up later this year.

Sens. Kirsten GillibrandKirsten GillibrandMoving beyond minimal: Fighting for paid family and medical leave McAuliffe: I wouldn't want a 'caretaker' in Kaine's Senate seat Tim Kaine backs call to boost funding for Israeli missile defense MORE (D-N.Y.), Richard BlumenthalRichard BlumenthalLawmakers mourn Gene Wilder’s death 'Power problem' grounds southern Florida flights Dem senator's daughter could face Congress over EpiPen price hike MORE (D-Conn.), Ron WydenRon WydenWhy you should care about National Whistleblower AppreciatIon Day Dems push to require presidential nominees to release tax returns Legislators privacy fight coincides with FCC complaint MORE (D-Ore.), Barbara BoxerBarbara BoxerDem senator pushes EPA on asbestos regulations Trump was wrong: Kaine is a liberal in a moderate's clothing Feds weigh whether carbon pollution should be measured in highway performance MORE (D-Calif.), Chris CoonsChris CoonsDEA decision against reclassifying marijuana ignores public opinion Dems ask Cruz to hold hearing on Trump's Russian hacking remarks Top Dem: ‘I don't believe for a minute’ Trump was joking about Russia MORE (D-Del.), Barbara MikulskiBarbara MikulskiWomen's Equality Day and the last glass ceiling The Trail 2016: Her big night Clinton to cast election as ‘moment of reckoning’ MORE (D-Md.), Sheldon WhitehouseSheldon WhitehouseDem senator: Clinton may command 'majority of the Republican caucus' Banking association backs financial transparency bill Shift in care could reverse the opioid epidemic MORE (D-R.I.), Bernie SandersBernie SandersThe Trail 2016: Trump the Politician Democrats applaud DHS review of immigrant detention centers Sanders endorses Dem candidates in critical Senate races MORE (I-Vt.), Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.), Al FrankenAl FrankenLiberal hypocrisy on the free exchange of ideas Winners and losers of the Dem convention Party unity overcomes chaos...and the Bernie-or-Bust crowd MORE (D-Minn.), Jeanne Shaheen Jeanne ShaheenTaxpayers should be wary of false sugar reform proposals 10 things candidates need to know about women entrepreneurs Dem senators to GOP: Dump Trump MORE (D-N.H.), Jeff MerkleyJeff MerkleySanders, Merkley back McConnell decision to skip TPP vote GOP senator: Anti-fossil fuel candidates ‘not fit’ for federal office Dem anxiety hangs over Clinton MORE (D-Ore.) and Patty MurrayPatty Murray'BernieCare' can save ObamaCare Senate Dems make Zika a campaign issue Rubio calls for lawmakers to return to DC, pass Zika funding MORE (D-Wash.) all signed the letter, adding that DOMA is a form of discrimination that creates a “tier of second-class families.”

“The Supreme Court will soon have its voice heard on this discriminatory policy that has already been deemed unconstitutional by two federal courts,” Gillibrand said in a statement Thursday. “In light of those earlier decisions, we must lift the hardship for LGBT families who live in fear of separation based on this antiquated law until the Supreme Court rules. Regardless of the court’s ultimate decision, it is well past time for Congress to recognize the marriages of all loving and committed couples and finally put the discriminatory DOMA policy into the dustbin of history.”

President Obama's administration has come out against DOMA, but many Republicans still support the law, which says marriage is between a man and a woman.

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