12 Senators Call on DOJ, DHS to Halt Deportations Involving Married Same-Sex Binational Couples

Senator John Kerry (D-MA) and eleven other senators — Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Daniel Akaka (D-Hawaii), Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Chris Coons (D-Del.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Daniel Inouye (D-Hawaii), Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) — have called on the Department of Justice and the Department of Homeland Security to halt deportations involving same-sex binational couples until legal questions regarding DOMA have been resolved.

Kerry Says the letter:

[W]e ask the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to hold marriage-based immigration petitions in abeyance pending a legislative repeal or a final determination on DOMA litigation.  In addition, we ask DHS to exercise prosecutorial discretion in commencing and prosecuting removal proceedings against married noncitizens that would be otherwise eligible to adjust their status to lawful permanent resident but for DOMA.  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.

The letter follows a similar request from Rep. Rush Holt (D-NJ).

Read the letter, AFTER THE JUMP...

DHS-DOJ-DOMA letter