Feinstein Saves the Day for Lesbian Couple

A Phillipines-born lesbian mother who was ordered to leave the country by next month for overstaying her visa will likely be allowed to stay through next year due to Sen. Dianne Feinstein's intervention in the case.

Feinstein introduced an emergency immigration bill late Wednesday on behalf of Shirley Tan who lives in Pacifica with her 12-year-old twin sons and partner of 19 years. A Feinstein spokeswoman says the 43-year-old Tan can't be deported until Congress acts on the legislation, which it is unlikely to do before its session expires in January 2011.

Gay rights advocates lobbied Feinstein to take up Tan's cause, noting that if her partner, Jay Mercado, were a man, the couple would be able to marry and Mercado -- as a naturalized citizen -- could sponsor Tan for residency.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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