Lucy Truman (left) and Kelli Ryan, who along with four other binational couples filed suit against DOMA on Monday
Five couples — one of whom first met more than 30 years ago, another who had shuffled between the United States and South Africa for over a decade to avoid breaking immigration law — filed suit earlier today in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York. They allege that the 1996 law, deemed unconstitutional and unworthy of further court defense in 2011 by the Obama administration, violates their equal protection rights under the U.S. Constitution.
Multiple challenges to DOMA are already well under way in the courts: An appeals court panel in Boston is set to hear arguments Wednesday in one such case, where a judge ruled nearly two years ago that a section of the law prohibiting federal recognition of same-sex marriages is unconstitutional.
But the new case is among the first to challenge the antigay law as it applies to immigration rights and is the first to be filed by an LGBT rights organization on behalf of gay immigrant families. A year ago the group Immigration Equality first announced it was planning its lawsuit against DOMA, which denies Americans the opportunity to sponsor a foreign-born same-sex partner for permanent residency.
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