A Senate committee on Monday killed a
bill that sought to update Virginia's laws that prohibit gay and
lesbian couples from marrying or entering a civil union.
According to the
Washington Blade, the Senate Courts of Justice Committee
tabled the bill indefinitely with a 10-2 vote.
Prefiled over the summer by openly gay
state Senator Adam Ebbin of Alexandria, Senate Bill 782 sought to
repeal two statutory laws, GayRVA.com
One of the laws, approved in 1975, was
a response to a Minnesota case which involved two men, Richard Baker
and James McConnell, being denied a marriage license. While they
lost their case on appeal, several states, including Virginia,
Maryland, Florida, California, New Hampshire and Wyoming, rushed to
shore up their marriage laws.
Voters in 2006 overwhelmingly approved
a constitutional amendment that defines marriage in the state as a
In 2014, a federal court struck down
Virginia's marriage ban as unconstitutional. The following year, the
Supreme Court in Obergefell v. Hodges found that gay couples
have a constitutional right to marry.
A bill that would begin the process of
repealing the state's unenforceable constitutional amendment is
expected to be heard in the coming weeks.