The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals ruling in Virginia’s Bostic v. Schaeffer marks the second federal appeals court that has ruled in favor of marriage equality since last year's historic Windsor ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court. The decision today follows the June rulings by a three-judge panel of the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals in Utah’s Kitchen v. Herbert and Okahoma's Bishop v. Smith. Today’s ruling solidifies Virginia’s already unique place in the U.S. history of marriage. In 1967 the Supreme Court of the United States handed down the “Loving decision”, in Loving v. Virginian, which was the landmark civil rights decision, which overturned the laws against interracial marriage.
Tracy Hollister MEUSA Program Director noted that the Fourth Circuit is the governing judicial circuit for Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland, South Carolina & her home state of North Carolina. Hollister stated, "I am thrilled that the Fourth Circuit set legal precedent that, once final, will help undo North Carolina’s Amendment One, making it our country’s most short-lived & last anti-marriage equality amendment. This ruling affirms what I felt in my heart as my friends & I phone banked to defeat Amendment One: each of us deserves the full dignity & respect that comes with being able to legally marry the person we love. When I return home, I will feel more equal & more hopeful."
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