Homeland Security: Binational Same-Sex Couples Still Low Priority

DiceThe Department of Homeland Security reiterated today that it will go easy on binational same-sex couples when reviewing immigration cases.

The Obama administration announced last year that such couples, barred from  federal recognition thanks to DOMA, would be given a pass as the immigration officials focused on more high priority cases. But no specific regulations were ever spelled out, and Democrats including House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi this week asked the administration to make their intentions more clear.

While there are still little specifics, Homeland Security Deputy Press Secretary Peter Boogaard told BuzzFeed, "DHS looks at the totality of the circumstances presented in individual cases, including whether an individual has close family ties to the United States as demonstrated by his or her same-sex marriage or other longstanding relationship to a United States citizen."

Still, the Department will not start issuing green cards to the foreign half of a binational couple until DOMA is officially repealed, said Boogaard.


  1. kpo5 says

    That makes me feel good.

    My straight, bi-national counterpoints get Green Cards and we get “low priority” of deportation.

    That’s *almost* equal, right?

    DOMA better get ripped to shreds. Counting on you, Kennedy!

  2. KPO5 says

    My reading is fine – and I understand that “low priority” is not a bad thing, but it’s also not a good thing. So my spouse doesn’t get deported, but with no Green Card in hand, there really isn’t a way to pursue a job without some other kind of Visa.

    Stay at home and rot while your spouse is gone 10 hours per day. Oh what fun!

    Bottom line, we’re still not equal. I agree with First Thing First – a DOMA repeal or positive SCOTUS ruling (which will happen first) is the high priority.

    But not equal is NEVER a good thing, even if it gets a tad better.

  3. Michaelandfred says

    And while “low priority” may sound good on paper, when you’re sitting in front of that lone immigration official you are totally at their mercy. Bad day, didn’t get laid last night, homophobic, sick, overworked…whatever. He or she has ALL the power in that interview and once denied you are SOL.

    Try walking through immigration and telling that officer with zero real world updates what the paper or Homeland Security says. There’s a quick cavity search and a return ticket home. 25 years of playing this game…. I’ll give a thousand dollars to each one you find that knows who Peter Boogaard is, let alone what he says.

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