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Rep to DHS: Stop LGBT Deportations

Rep to DHS: Stop LGBT Deportations

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A New Jersey congressman is asking the Department of Homeland Security to prevent the deportation of a gay constituent's noncitizen spouse as well as to suspend deportation proceedings faced by LGBT couples in similar circumstances.

Stop the Deportations reports that in a Thursday letter to Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano, Rep. Rush Holt asked for immediate remedy in the case of Henry Velandia, a Venezuelan national who came to the U.S. in 2002 on a visitor visa and married his spouse, Josh Vandiver, in Connecticut in 2009. Vandiver's green card application on behalf of Velandia was denied as a result of the Defense of Marriage Act; Velandia faces a deportation hearing May 6.

Given the Obama administration's decision to cease defending DOMA in court, "I am asking you to suspend the deportation of all spouses of citizens in a same-sex marriage until a decision is reached on DOMA," Holt wrote. "This is the right thing to do for Henry, Josh, and countless others who are being victimized by this discriminatory and unconstitutional law."

Read the full letter at Stop the Deportations.

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