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Gay spouse living with AIDS wins two-year stay of deportation to Australia

SAN FRANCISCO -- Bradford Wells and Anthony John Makk have been together for 19 years. They're married and live in the Castro, but have been living under the threat of separation because Wells is a U.S. citizen and Makk a citizen of Australia.

That threat ended Wednesday, when they won a two-year stay of Makk's deportation.

"We're still dizzy from the news," said Makk, 49. "We are elated."

Because the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act bars all federal marital rights and responsibilities to same-sex couples, Makk was denied consideration for a green card based on his marriage to Wells, who suffers from severe AIDS-related illnesses. Makk is his primary caregiver.

"I'm relieved, really excited and relieved," said Wells, 56. "I am so grateful I don't have to worry about Anthony being taken out of the country."

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