Press Releases


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Washington, January 14, 2015 | Tia Shuyler (202-225-4376) | comments
U.S. Representative Don Beyer, Northern Virginia Democrat, voiced his opposition to Bill No. 1414 put forth in the Virginia House of Delegates by Del. Robert Marshall. The proposed bill would give any business accredited or licensed by the Commonwealth of Virginia the right to refuse service to same-sex couples if that business has “religious or moral” objections.

“Virginia has made remarkable progress toward marriage equality in recent years, reaffirming the Commonwealth’s old adage, ‘Virginia is for Lovers.’ Delegate Marshall’s proposal to allow businesses to discriminate against anyone demonstrating “homosexual behavior” is shocking in its ignorance of the steps our country has made since Jim Crow laws like this existed. This bill is offensive, not just to LGBT Virginians, but to all those who value equality and civil rights. Governor McAuliffe has promised to veto this bill and I support him,” said Rep. Beyer.

Del. Marshall’s bill would block Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe’s executive order to state agencies to recognize same-sex marriage.

“All Virginians should have the right to love, marry, and adopt with their committed partner. It is time to update our Commonwealth’s constitution to reflect the our values of fairness and equality. Gov. McAuliffe, State Senators Ebbin and Howell, and Delegates Krupicka, Surovell, and all those should be commended for working tirelessly to ensure that it does,” added Rep. Beyer.

Gov. McAuliffe announced on Monday that his administration is updating all sections of the Virginia code referring to “man and woman” or “husband and wife” to be changed to “spouse” as part of his Equal Opportunity Legislative Agenda. Similarly, State Senators Adam Ebbin, Janet Howell and State Delegates Robert Krupika and Scott Surovell have filed resolutions in the General Assembly seeking to remove the gay marriage ban from the Commonwealth’s constitution.

In October, 2014, the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals declared the Commonwealth’s marriage equality ban unconstitutional.
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