Two openly gay legislators in Virginia have filed bills to repeal outdated prohibitions on gay marriage within the historic east coast state.
Despite a ruling by the country’s Supreme Court in June last year legalising gay marriage across the United States, Virginia has retained statutes prohibiting same sex marriage within state lines, although they are of course no longer enforced.
The Constitution of Virginia states that “only a union between one man and one woman may be a marriage valid in or recognized by this Commonwealth and its political subdivisions.”
Meanwhile, the Code of Virginia states bluntly:
“A marriage between persons of the same sex is prohibited.”
Now Senator Adam P Ebbin and Delegate Mark D Sickles hope to repeal the now invalid legislation. Both are Democrats, from the upper and lower houses of the Virginia General Assembly respectively.
In a statement Delegate Sickles said:
“I know it has been hard for Virginia to clear her code of unconstitutional provisions in the past, but this is a great time to start. The Supreme Court has made it perfectly clear that marriage equality is the law of the land, and that individual freedom and privacy are guaranteed to all.”
Meanwhile, Senator Ebbin said:
“The Virginia Constitution and code need to reflect the reality that lesbian and gay couples are full and equal citizens of the Commonwealth [of Virginia]. It is unconscionable that the General Assembly has not yet fixed the code and begun the process to bring the Constitution into conformance with the law of the land.”