Over 8,000 child marriages were allowed to take place in America under the Obama administration, due to a massive loophole in immigration laws.
The child marriages consist of mostly girls brought in from foreign countries, according to a shocking Senate report released on Friday.
In one case, a 71-year-old obtained a visa for a teenage bride from Guatemala, according to the bipartisan report from the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Reform Committee chaired by Republican Wisconsin Sen. Ron Johnson.
Washingtonexaminer.com reports: The report, the product of a year-long investigation, puts attention on a quirk in policies that promote child marriages and trafficking in the U.S. at a time when the State Department is fighting child marriages overseas.
It also shines a light on the complicated and sometimes contradictory web of immigration laws that President Trump and some in Congress are trying to rewrite and reform.
“U.S. law and U.S. Department of State policy aim to prevent and reduce the risks of child marriages occurring around the world, yet major loopholes in U.S. law have allowed thousands of minors to be subjected to child marriages,” the committee’s report said.
“Under the Immigration and Nationality Act, a U.S. child may petition for a visa for a spouse or fiance living in another country, and a U.S. adult may petition for a visa for a minor spouse or fiance living abroad,” it stated.
In total, the committee estimated that over the past 11 years, mostly under the Obama era, 8,686 visas for child spouses or fiances were approved.
“In 95 percent of the cases, the younger person was a girl,” said the report. Many were from Latin America.
And overall, more than 3 million of the spousal and fiance visas were OK’d over that time.
The report has shocked many. Former first daughter Chelsea Clinton tweeted, “Horrifying: ‘US approved thousands of child bride requests.’ Yet, not surprising that our immigration system is complicit in supporting #childmarriage.”