Marriage equality bill fails in Senate committee

lgbtThe Senate Courts of Justice Committee failed – for the third year in a row – to address inconsistencies in the Code of Virginia with regards to marriage equality as a result of the Bostic v. Schaefer decision.

Senator Adam Ebbin’s (D-Alexandria) bill, SB782, aimed to correct language in the Code that prohibits same sex marriage. The bill was referred, again, to the Code Commission, in spite of the fact that the Code Commission has declined to address this specific issue.

Said Senator Ebbin, “Marriage equality is the law of the land, plain and simple. Our Code needs to reflect that. Legislation keeps going back and forth; Senate Courts refers it to the Code Commission; the Code Commission refers it to Senate Courts to take action. It is an unnecessary game of ping pong and a legislative charade. In contrast, it took only a year for the General Assembly to amend the language in the Code after Loving v. Virginia.”

Said Senator Mamie Locke (D-Hampton), “We are not asking for a change in policy; we are attempting to streamline the Code. This is a continuation of the same rhetoric we’re seeing out of the other side: While Governor McAuliffe is working around the clock to attract businesses and jobs to our great Commonwealth, our Republican colleagues are erecting barriers that prevent the kind of inclusive society that many of these businesses are looking for. Marriage equality is the law of the land and it is time for this to be reflected in the Code.”

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