Virginia Democrats react to same sex marriage ruling

gay-equalityTop Virginia Democrats are responding with expected euphoria to Thursday’s federal court ruling overturning the Commonwealth’s ban on same sex marriage.

 

Gov. Terry McAuliffe: 

“I applaud the federal district court’s decision to ensure all Virginians are treated equally under the law, no matter what their backgrounds are or whom they love. In order to grow our economy and attract the best businesses, entrepreneurs, and families to Virginia, we must be open and welcoming to all who call our Commonwealth home.  As this case continues through the judicial process, I will enforce the laws currently on the books, but this decision is a significant step forward in achieving greater equality for all of our citizens.”

 

Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam:

“I applaud the Court’s decision to strike down Virginia’s ban on same sex marriage and help ensure that all of Virginia’s citizens are treated equally under the law. Marriage is a fundamental and an incredibly personal right of all Virginians, one that government should not interfere with. Unfortunately Virginia has a notorious history of intervening in decisions about whom our citizens can and cannot marry, a history which we must put behind us. This historic decision brings us one step closer to ensuring that all Virginians, regardless of sexual orientation, have equal rights under the law.”

 

Attorney General Mark Herring: 

“This decision is a victory for the Constitution and for treating everyone equally under the law. It is the latest step in a journey towards equality for all Virginians, no matter who they are or whom they love. But Judge Wright Allen’s eloquent decision is only one step in what I suspect will be an extended legal process to definitively answer the questions raised in this case. When we announced the decision to change Virginia’s legal position in Bostic v. Rainey, I said that the case presented fundamental questions that need to be decided by a court, and may ultimately need to be decided by the Supreme Court. That remains true today. The legal process will continue to play out in the months to come, but this decision shows that Virginia, like America, is coming to a better place in recognizing that every Virginian deserves to be treated equally and fairly.”

 

U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine:

“Happy Valentine’s Day to my beautiful wife Anne and to all Virginians.  It’s a particularly great day in light of the federal court ruling striking down the state prohibition against same-sex marriage.  I campaigned against the ban in 2006 and was very disappointed when it passed.  Today, we celebrate a Virginia for lovers and remember the great Shakespearian wisdom: ‘Let me not to the marriage of true minds admit impediments.’”

 

Virginia Senate Democratic Caucus Chairman Sen. A. Donald McEachin (D-Henrico):

“Last night’s court decision to strike down the same-sex marriage ban was a step in the right direction for fairness, justice and equality for ALL Virginians. We’ll continue to fight to repeal the Marshall-Newman amendment, but the work of the courts can help right this wrong.

“We have more work to do. This year, my Democratic colleagues and I introduced legislation to provide partner benefits for state and municipal employees, fairer and open adoptions, ending the harmful practice of so-called conversion therapy, finally codify employee non-discrimination.

 

Democratic Party of Virginia Chair Charniele Herring:

“The U.S. District Court Judge’s decision finding Virginia’s same sex marriage ban unconstitutional moves Virginia a step closer to becoming more inclusive,” said DPVA Chair Charniele Herring. “In her profound words, Judge Wright wrote ‘We the People become more inclusive, and our freedom more perfect.’ We must remain forever vigilant as continue to work for freedom and equality for all Virginians.”

 

Democratic House Leader David Toscano (D-Charlottesville): 

“This is a historic step forward for equality and fairness in Virginia. All Virginians deserve the right to marry the person they love, and this decision is significant in moving us toward marriage equality in our nation.”

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