Marriage Equality Passes the Senate, Now Heads to the Governor 

Richmond, Virginia—While it’s shameful that basic marriage rights are still up for debate in 2024, LGBTQ+ community members and interracial couples are one step closer to being allowed to marry without hindrance in Virginia. Today, the Senate passed HB 174, a marriage equality bill sponsored by Delegate Rozia Henson. The bill, which passed the House earlier during the legislative session on a vote of 54-40, requires that all couples who request a marriage license must be given one, regardless of the sex, gender, or race of the individuals. The bill makes an exception for clergy members acting in their religious capacity. It will now head to the Governor’s desk to be signed into law. 

“Until we can pass a constitutional amendment protecting equal marriage, this bill is an important step in guaranteeing that every couple has the right to marry,” said LaTwyla Mathias, Executive Director of Progress Virginia. “The government shouldn’t be in the business of telling us who we can and cannot marry. Basic marriage rights shouldn’t be left up to the discretion of individual clerks of court, and we applaud the Senate for passing this necessary legislation. We’ll be watching to make sure that Governor Glenn Youngkin signs this bill into law when it makes it to his desk.”