The Senate General Laws and Technology Committee approved House Bill 2025 by an 8-7 vote margin.
State Sens. Frank Ruff (R-Mecklenburg County), Jill Holtzman Vogel (R-Winchester), Dick Black (R-Loudoun County), Bryce Reeves (R-Spotsvylvania County), William DeSteph (R-Virginia Beach), David Suetterlein (R-Roanoke), Siobhan Dunnavant (R-Henrico County) and Glen Sturtevant (R-Richmond) voted for HB 2025. State Sens. Mamie Locke (D-Hampton), George Barker (D-Fairfax County), Adam Ebbin (D-Alexandria), Jennifer Wexton (D-Loudoun County), Scott Surovell (D-Fairfax County), Jeremy McPike (D-Prince William County) and Monty Mason (D-Williamsburg) voted against the measure.
State Del. Nick Freitas (R-Culpeper) introduced HB 2025.
The measure would not require any person, religious organization or affiliates to “participate in the solemnization of any marriage” if it conflicts with “a sincerely held religious belief or moral conviction that marriage is or should be recognized as the union of one man and one woman.” HB 2025 would also prohibit Virginia officials from punishing those who refuse to take part in a gay or lesbian wedding because of their religious beliefs.
The Virginia House of Delegates on Feb. 2 approved HB 2025 by a 57-37 vote margin.