Commonwealth of Virginia
Office of the Attorney General
900 East Main Street
For media inquiries only, contact:
Michael Kelly, Director of Communications
STATEMENT OF ATTORNEY GENERAL HERRING
~ On marriage equality in Virginia ~
RICHMOND (October 6, 2014)--Today, the Supreme Court rejected all petitions for certiorari related to Virginia's marriage equality litigation, thereby letting stand the Fourth Circuit's decision that same-sex couples in the Commonwealth are entitled to all the rights and privileges of marriage. The Fourth Circuit is expected to issue its mandate at 1 p.m., meaning marriage licenses for same-sex couples can be issued at that time and the Commonwealth will recognize all marriages that were lawfully performed in other states. Local clerks are receiving guidance and forms necessary to begin performing marriages today, and the Attorney General's Office is working with the Governor's Office and state agencies to implement any needed changes in light of this action.
In response to today's historic ruling, Attorney General Mark Herring, the first state attorney general to argue successfully at the district and appeals level for a marriage ban to be struck down, issued the following statement:
"A new day has dawned, and the rights guaranteed by our Constitution are shining through.
"All Virginians have the constitutional right to be treated fairly and equally, to have loving, committed relationships recognized and respected, and to enjoy the blessings of married life. We should all be proud that our fellow Virginians helped lead us forward.
"This is a tremendous moment in Virginia history. We will continue to fight discrimination wherever we find it, but today, we celebrate a moment when we move closer to fulfilling the promise of equality ignited centuries ago in Virginia, and so central to the American experience."
Attorney General Herring is expected to hold media availabilities to discuss today's news in Northern Virginia and Richmond. Details will be forthcoming.
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