Thursday, January 23, 2014

Virginia's AG Will Not Defend State's Anti-Gay Marriage Ban

Virginia's new Attorney General Mark R. Herring informed the world that he believes that state's anti-gay marriage ban is unconstitutional and that he will not be fighting for it when the case goes to court:
In a move that could give gay marriage its first foothold in the South, Virginia's attorney general said Thursday he concluded the state's ban on same-sex unions is unconstitutional and he will join the fight against it.

Newly elected Democratic Attorney General Mark R. Herring said he would support gay couples who have filed lawsuits challenging the state's ban.

"After thorough legal review, I have now concluded that Virginia's ban on marriage between same sex couples violates the Fourteenth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution on two grounds: marriage is a fundamental right being denied to some Virginians, and the ban unlawfully discriminates on the basis of both sexual orientation and gender," Herring said.

Herring stressed the same-sex ban will be enforced despite his challenge.
Virginia is in the midst of two federal marriage equality court challeges, one involving the American Foundation of Equal Rights and the other involving Lambda Legal and the ACLU.

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