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Content about Virginia

April 12, 2014

'Loving teaches that the Fourteenth Amendment protects the fundamental right to marry, even if the way in which it is practiced would have surprised the Framers or made them feel uncomfortable'

The attorney general of Virginia submitted a brief supporting a judge's decision the state's ban on gay marriage unconstitutional.

In papers filed with the 4th US Circuit Court of Appeals, Attorney General Mark Herring maintained blocking gay marriage mirrored the prohibition against interracial marriage.

March 31, 2014

'...If the definition of marriage is no longer based on procreation and the ability to procreate naturally, then what is the purpose in prohibiting marriage between persons of close kinship'

An attorney for court clerks from Virginia filed the first brief in the appeal of a judge's ruling that found the state's ban on gay marriage unconstitutional.

David B. Oakley, representing clerks from Norfolk and Prince William County, submitted his arguments, on 28 March, to the 4th US Circuit Court of Appeals. The clerks are appealing the mid-February opinion of Judge Arenda L. Wright Allen.

March 26, 2014

A Virginia Baptist Christian school principal has written to the guardians of an 8-year-old girl asking them to send her to another school unless she is prepared to dress more feminine – citing the school’s policy on ‘alternative gender identity’

An 8-year-old girl has had to change schools in order to dress the way she feels comfortable after her Christian school in Virginia wrote to her guardians to inform them she had to dress more femininely if she was be welcome at school.

Sunnie Kahle is being raised by her grandparents, Doris and Carroll Thompson, and prefers to have short hair and wear t-shirts and jeans – though she is adamant that she is a girl and does not want to be a boy.

March 14, 2014

The couples moved to Tennesee after legally marrying in other states - filed federal lawsuit last October

A federal judge in Nashville ruled on Friday (14 March) that Tennessee must recognize the marriages of three same-sex couples while their lawsuit against the state's gay marriage ban is pending.

The three couples were legally married in other states before moving to Tennessee.

They filed suit last October claiming the ban violates the federal Constitution’s guarantees of equal protection and due process and the constitutionally protected right to travel between and move to other states.

March 10, 2014

North Carolina attorney general Roy Cooper has said it is his job to defend his state’s ban on same-sex couples getting married even though he personally believes that legally they should be able to

Despite being a supporter of marriage equality, North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper says it is his duty to defend his state’s ban on same-sex marriage despite the attorneys general of Kentucky and Virginia electing to not defend their states’ bans.

February 26, 2014

But ban is left in place until appeals process is complete

The Texas ban on gay marriage was declared unconstitutional by a federal judge today.

But same-sex couples must put those wedding plans in hold for now because Judge Orlando Garcia left the ban in place until an appeals court can rule on the case.

The ruling continues a string of legal victories for gay marriage following similar decisions in Utah, Oklahoma and Virginia.

This latest ruling came as the result of a lawsuit filed by two gay couples.

February 20, 2014

Citing recent success in federal courts in other US states, they want ban immediately declared unconstitutional

Feeling the momentum from judicial victories in other states, the four couples suing to overturn Idaho's ban on gay marriage are trying to move their case along a little faster.

The couples filed a motion late Tuesday (18 February) asking a federal court in Boise to issue a decision without a trial. They claim the ban violates the equal protection and due process clauses of the US Constitution.

The motion is scheduled to be heard by Chief US Magistrate Judge Candy W. Dale on 5 May 5 in Boise.

February 14, 2014

Their attorneys believe first victory in southern state is part of unstoppable trend

Tim Bostic and Tony London and Carol Schall and Mary Townley are having a most memorable Valentine's Day.

The Virginia couples were part of a press conference today to talk about Virginia's ban of gay marriage being overturned by a federal judge as a result of the lawsuit they are the lead plaintiffs in.

'It means even more for us as parents,' Townley said. 'It means to world knowing that our family will be treated like every other family.'

February 14, 2014

The ruling, which would make Virginia 18th state in the US to have gay marriage, has been stayed pending appeal

A federal judge has declared Virginia's gay marriage ban to be unconstitutional paving the way for the state to become the 18th in the US with marriage equality.

The decision by the US District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia was made public late Thursday (13 February), just hours before Valentine's Day.

But marriages cannot begin right away because the decision has been stayed pending an appeal.

February 4, 2014

Ted Olsen and David Boies tell judge a law that relegates same-sex couples to second-class status cannot stand

Attorneys Ted Olsen and David Boies were back in a federal court on Tuesday (4 January) arguing for the right for same-sex couples in the state to get married - this time in Virginia.

The unlikely legal team, who famously squared-off against each other in a 2000 Supreme Court case that resulted in George W. Bush's presidency, are hoping to repeat their success in California when gay marriage ban Proposition 8 was overturned.

January 31, 2014

Initially filed on behalf of two couples, case will now represent all same-sex couples in the state who cannot legally marry

A lawsuit challenging the state of Virginia's ban on same-sex marriage was granted class-action status on Friday (31 January).

The decision by a federal district court in Virginia extends the scope of those represented in the lawsuit.

It now not only includes the two original couples named as plaintiffs but also all same-sex couples in the state who cannot legally marry or whose legal marriages performed elsewhere are not recognized in Virginia.

January 23, 2014

Mark Herring believes law against same-sex marriage is unconstitutional

Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring says he has no plans to defend his state's gay marriage ban against pending lawsuits challenging it.

Herring, elected in November, believes that law 'unlawfully discriminates on the basis of both sexual orientation and gender.'

'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,' he said in a statement Thursday (23 January).

January 23, 2014

Mark Herring believes law against same-sex marriage is unconstitutional

Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring says he has no plans to defend his state's gay marriage ban against pending lawsuits challenging it.

Herring, elected in November, believes that law 'unlawfully discriminates on the basis of both sexual orientation and gender.'

'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,' he said in a statement Thursday (23 January).

January 12, 2014

After inauguration ceremony, Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe stands up for the state's LGBT employees

After being sworn in as Virginia's seventy-second governor, Terry McAuliffe signed an executive order banning discrimination against LGBT state workers.

'My administration is committed to keeping Virginia open and welcoming to all who call our commonwealth home,' McAuliffe said after signing the directive, according the Washington Blade.

January 12, 2014

After inauguration ceremony, Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe stands up for the state's LGBT employees

After being sworn in as Virginia's seventy-second governor, Terry McAuliffe signed an executive order banning discrimination against LGBT state workers.

'My administration is committed to keeping Virginia open and welcoming to all who call our commonwealth home,' McAuliffe said after signing the directive, according the Washington Blade.

November 26, 2013

State Senator Adam Ebbin has introduced legislation to pave the way for marriage equality

Adam Ebbin, an openly gay state senator in Virginia, has introduced legislation that would overturn the ban on gay marriage that voters passed in 2006.

Ebbin does so at a time when 15 US states plus the District of Columbia have made gay marriage legal and the US Supreme Court has gutted the Defense of Marriage Act. In the House a Delegates, a companion bill has been introduced  by Delegate Joseph Morrissey.

November 26, 2013

State Senator Adam Ebbin has introduced legislation to pave the way for marriage equality

Adam Ebbin, an openly gay state senator in Virginia, has introduced legislation that would overturn the ban on gay marriage that voters passed in 2006.

Ebbin does so at a time when 15 US states plus the District of Columbia have made gay marriage legal and the US Supreme Court has gutted the Defense of Marriage Act. In the House a Delegates, a companion bill has been introduced  by Delegate Joseph Morrissey.

November 23, 2013

'I have to worry about some intolerant person ruining the surprise I had planned'

A woman who ordered a surprise anniversary cake for her girlfriend doesn't feel much like celebrating now.

When she picked up the cake from a bakery in Arlington, Virginia, she says she discovered a homophobic message on it instead of the words 'Happy Anniversary Lindsey! Love, Sarah.'

Sarah told her story to Advocate.com and asked that her last name not be used.

November 19, 2013

Michael Drougas says he has not received a single negative reaction after coming out 'on my own terms'

When Michael Drougas won the Virginia AA State high school championship last year, people knew he was a good tennis player.

What they did not know is that he is gay.

Now they do because the Salem High School senior decided to come out on Twitter in a lengthy post that he says so far has not resulted in a single negative reaction.

November 1, 2013

The Tea Party Republican who is running to be Lieutenant Governor of Virginia has denied making homophobic statements that were caught on tape and broadcast including that gay people are ‘very sick psychologically’

Virginia Tea Party Republican EW Jackson has denied ever saying that he thought gays and lesbians were sick people and that allowing gays in the military would lead to God abandoning US troops - despite making the comments on tape when he knew he was being recorded.

In October of last year Jackson, who is now running to become Lieutenant Governor of Virginia, sat down for a recorded interview with anti-gay rights group Americans for Truth About Homosexuality and said of gay people, ‘Their minds are perverted.’

September 30, 2013

Attorneys successfully led effort to overturn California's Prop 8

Theodore B. Olson and David Boies, former rivals who came together to fight California's Proposition 8, announced today (30 September) that they are joining the effort to overturn Virginia's gay marriage ban.

The federal lawsuit Bostic v. Rainey contends that the Virginia Marriage Amendment and other Virginia laws that prohibit gay and lesbian couples from marrying are unconstitutional, restrict personal freedom, and cause serious harm to loving and committed couples and their families.

September 30, 2013

Timothy Bostic and Tony London and Carol Schall and Mary Townley have been together for decades

Timothy Bostic and Tony London and Carol Schall and Mary Townley are the faces of the federal legal challenge to the Virginia Marriage Amendment enacted in 2006 to ban same-sex couples from getting married.

If the case goes all the way to the US Supreme Court, as a similar challenge to California's marriage ban did, they are faces the American public will be seeing a lot more of.

Bostic and London have been a couple for nearly 25 years and have lived in Virginia since 1991.

September 30, 2013

Timothy Bostic and Tony London and Carol Schall and Mary Townley have been together for decades

Timothy Bostic and Tony London and Carol Schall and Mary Townley are the faces of the federal legal challenge to the Virginia Marriage Amendment enacted in 2006 to ban same-sex couples from getting married.

If the case goes all the way to the US Supreme Court, as a similar challenge to California's marriage ban did, they are faces the American public will be seeing a lot more of.

Bostic and London have been a couple for nearly 25 years and have lived in Virginia since 1991.

September 20, 2013

Floyd Lee Corkins, who planned a mass shooting at the anti-gay Family Research Council over its outspoken opposition to the rights of LGBTs, has received a 25 year jail sentence

The Virginia man who planned to commit a mass shooting at the Family Research Council’s Washington DC headquarters has received a 25 year sentence for the attack.

Floyd Lee Corkins, now 29, entered the lobby of the group’s headquarters on 15 August last year, pretending to be interested in volunteering for the virulently anti-gay group, but planned to shoot as many people in the building as he could.