RICHARD GONZALES: Fifty-five year old Bradford Wells, a longtime resident of San Francisco, has good days and bad days.
BRADFORD WELLS: It's just part of chronic illness. I've been battling this disease now for more than half of my life.
GONZALES: Wells has AIDS and a host of related ailments. His primary caregiver is the man he married seven years ago, Anthony John Makk, a citizen of Australia who entered this country legally.
ANTHONY JOHN MAKK: We were married in Worcester, Massachusetts, July 22, 2004.
GONZALES: Sitting in their backyard in San Francisco's Castro District, Makk says, as a spouse of a U.S. citizen, he's applied for a green card, but he's been rejected because under the Defense of Marriage Act, or DOMA, the federal government doesn't recognize their marriage. So Makk is appealing, but his permission to stay here expires this week, so he's left in a legal limbo and that upsets Wells.
WELLS: We're legally married. I believe that we should have the same legal rights as every other married couple in this country. I don't want to live under a deportation order. I don't want my family under a deportation order.
GONZALES: But Wells's cloud of uncertainty may soon lift. Last week, the Department of Homeland Security announced that it will concentrate on deporting criminal offenders. Less priority will be given to deporting individuals who came here legally, have strong family and community ties and are the primary caretakers of a U.S. citizen. A spokesman says that it can include gay and lesbian married couples.
Steve Rawls is a spokesman for Immigration Equality, a gay group that supports Makk's efforts to get a green card.
STEVE RAWLS: There is no doubt that the announcement by DHS last week that they were including gay and lesbian families among the families that they intend to help is a step in the right direction.