DOMA Going Down Thanks to Gay Irish Illegal Immigrant

DOMA Going Down Thanks to Gay Irish Illegal ImmigrantOkay, so maybe we’re getting ahead of ourselves, here, but everyone knows it’s great to have a little Irish in ya. Now, due to the case of soon-to-be-deported Paul Wilson Dorman, a gay undocumented Irishman, the Obama Administration is ready to defend the right of the U.S. to keep our gay Irishmen solidly where they belong … in New Jersey.

Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder realize that in order to save America from the mass deportations of gay Irishmen they must challenge in some way the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act without actually challenging the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act.

First let me explain Mr. Dorman’s situation. Mr. Dorman has been in a long-term relationship since 1997 with John Paul Frederick, Jr., a U.S. citizen and has been legally married to him through a 2009 civil union in New Jersey. However, Dorman had his application for legal residency denied because the federal Defense of Marriage of Act (DOMA) defines marriage as only between a man and a woman; it does not recognize same-sex marriage.

So when Dorman went to pick up his son at the airport recently a member of the ground staff became suspicious of his immigration status and reported him to the authorities.

Had Dorman been a heterosexual picking up his offspring from the airport, none of this would be an issue. The Bureau of Immigration Appeals (BIA) would have given the Irishman his rightful green card as a married heterosexual man married to a married heterosexual woman.

But no, the BIA refused Dorman his green card appeal due to minor technically in DOMA. See, in Section 3, the Definition of Marriage, it states that:

In determining the meaning of any Act of Congress, or of any ruling, regulation, or interpretation of the various administrative bureaus and agencies of the United States, the word ‘marriage’ means only a legal union between one man and one woman as husband and wife, and the word ‘spouse’ refers only to a person of the opposite sex who is a husband or a wife.

DOMA’s Section 1 simply names the act and Section 2 simply violates the Constitution’s Full Faith and Credit Clause. It’s all about Section 3 in this case and that’s why Holder has filed a decision on May 5th vacating the decision by the BIA. He is now requiring that the case, which had been before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit for more than a year and which was nearing oral argument, be sent back to the BIA.

In doing so, he is asking that the BIA clarify whether or not, “absent the requirements of DOMA,” Dorman’s civil union qualifies him as a legal spouse under the Immigration and Naturalization Act.

Holder explains:

In the exercise of my review authority under that regulation, and upon consideration of the record in this case, I direct that the order of the Board be vacated and that this matter be remanded to the Board to make such findings as may be necessary to determine whether and how the constitutionality of DOMA is presented in this case, including, but not limited to: 1) whether respondent’s same-sex partnership or civil union qualifies him to be considered a “spouse” under New Jersey law; 2) whether, absent the requirements of DOMA, respondent’s same-sex partnership or civil union would qualify him to be considered a “spouse” under the Immigration and Nationality Act; 3) what, if any, impact the timing of respondent’s civil union should have on his request for that discretionary relief; and 4) whether, if he had a “qualifying relative,” the respondent would be able to satisfy the exceptional and unusual hardship requirement for cancellation of removal.

So there’s the constitutional challenge. “For the attorney general to ask the court to clarify this issue, in the wake of declaring DOMA unconstitutional, means that the time has come to resolve this,” says Dorman’s attorney Nicholas J. Mundy. “It’s sending an unmistakable message to Congress and the courts to make a change.”

“You have to win the battles in order to win the war. I think we’ve just won a battle. Naturally we would have preferred to have seen the attorney general direct the Board of Appeals on how to answer these questions, but that would have been too much too soon for the GOP perhaps.”

Oh, most definitely. Why? Because, this issue mixes three issues that the GOP fears the most gays, illegal immigrants, and angry Irishmen (you thought I was gonna say leprechauns, huh?). Well, they’re afraid of leprechauns too but so am I and that’s something for another article.

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