New Virginia Attorney General Refuses To Defend Same-Sex Marriage Ban
Newly elected Virginia Attorney General Mark R. Herring has deemed the state's ban on same-sex marriage unconstitutional!
The New York Times reports that Attorney General Herring has now joined the lawsuit challenging the ban in federal court.
Michael Kelly, a spokesman for Attorney General Mark R. Herring, said that instead of defending the ban, “the Commonwealth will side with the plaintiffs in seeking to have the ban declared unconstitutional.”
The decision by Mr. Herring, who took office as attorney general this month, follows recent rulings by federal court judges in Utah and Oklahoma that have struck down laws forbidding same-sex marriage in those states. The move is an abrupt shift from previous positions taken by Virginia’s socially conservative elected officials.
Attorney General Herring told reporters Thursday:
“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."
It looks like Virginia will soon be on the right side of history!
Quite the refreshing change from virulently anti-gay douchebag (and former Virginia Attorney General) Ken Cuccinelli!