Summary: The Right to Marry Constitutional Amendment repeals a prohibition against same-sex marriage and substitutes an affirmative right to marry.
Based on Virginia SJR 270 (2021)
WHEREAS, recognition of the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in our country and in the world;
WHEREAS, the United States Supreme Court decision in Obergefell v. Hodges, 576 U.S. 644 (2015), found that the right to marry is a fundamental, constitutionally-protected right which requires states and their political subdivisions and agents to issue marriage licenses, recognize marriages, and treat all marriages equally under the law, regardless of the sex or gender of the parties to the marriage; and
WHEREAS, it right and proper to replace the prohibition against same-sex marriage in the state Constitution with an affirmative right to marry.
RESOLVED by the [legislature], That the following amendment to the Constitution of [State] be, and the same hereby is, proposed for approval by referendum:
Amend Section [XXX] Article [XXX] of the Constitution of [State] as follows:
Section [XXX] Fundamental right to marry.
That the right to marry is a fundamental right, inherent in the liberty of persons, and marriage is one of the vital personal rights essential to the orderly pursuit of happiness.
This State and its political subdivisions and agents shall issue marriage licenses, recognize marriages, and treat all marriages equally under the law regardless of the sex or gender of the parties to the marriage.
Religious organizations and clergy acting in their religious capacity shall have the right to refuse to perform any marriage.
AND FURTHER RESOLVED, that the current Section [XXX] Article [XXX], which purports to limit marriage to “a union between one man and one woman,” is eliminated.