American Foundation for Equal Rights

Marriage News Blog

4th Circuit Rules Virginia Marriage Ban UNCONSTITUTIONAL


The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit has affirmed that Virginia’s marriage ban is unconstitutional because it violates the Equal Protection and Due Process Clauses of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. Today’s decision sends the message that loving couples like our plaintiffs – Tim Bostic & Tony London and Carol Schall & Mary Townley – are entitled to the same basic rights and protections as every other American.

Hollingsworth v. Perry, the AFER-led challenge to California’s Proposition 8, was the first lawsuit in which a federal court of appeals ruled in favor of marriage equality.

Today’s decision is monumental as it also paves the way for West Virginia, North Carolina, and South Carolina to strike down their marriage bans as those states fall under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.

An appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court by the Defendants is expected, and it will be costly.


Pledge your support today and make a special donation so that we can defend this decision at the United States Supreme Court. Our opponents, represent by the same organization we defeated in Perry, will do all they can to get this decision overturned.

By making a donation today, you will ensure that where you live must not determine where you can marry.


“Each and every milestone in this fight for marriage equality brings Tony and me one step closer to making our dream of being married a reality. Our victory today reminds us why we filed this lawsuit – to fight for respect and full equality not only for us, but for all Virginians.” – Tim Bostic, Plaintiff

“The Circuit Court’s decision reminds me of how proud I am to be a Virginian. Mary and I have lived here for over forty years, have been in a wonderful relationship for nearly thirty, and have raised a beautiful daughter here in our home state. We could not be more thrilled with the judges’ decision.” – Carol Schall, Plaintiff