US: Federal appeals court strikes down Virginia’s same-sex marriage ban

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A Virginia federal appeals court struck down the state’s same-sex marriage ban on Monday.

The court ruled that 2006 voter-approved laws barring same-sex marriage and denying recognition of same-sex marriages performed in other states violate US constitutional rights.

The 2-1 decision came from the 4th US Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond, which has jurisdiction over Virginia, Maryland, West Virginia, North Carolina, and South Carolina.

Maryland is the only state out of the five to currently recognize same-sex marriages.

Same-sex marriages will begin in Virginia in 21 days, according to the ACLU, unless the ruling is contested.

It is likely the ruling will be contested and brought to the Supreme Court, where it will wait alongside other state bans to be heard.

A federal judge overturned the state’s ban on same-sex marriage in February.

The attorney general of Virginia filed a brief condemning the state’s same-sex marriage ban, saying it is unconstitutional in April.

Arguments and appeals in this case were heard on 13 May.