ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) — A federal judge has refused to dismiss a legal challenge by a group objecting to a requirement that race be listed on Virginia marriage license applications.
A lawsuit filed last month against the state registrar and two Virginia court clerks challenges the state requirement to list race.
In a decision issued late Friday, U.S. District Court Judge Rossie D. Alston Jr. rejected a motion to dismiss the challenge. He wrote that the requirement is unconstitutional because it denies the plaintiffs their constitutional right to due process.
Alston's ruling also prevents the state from enforcing the requirement, saying it burdens the individuals' right to marry.
State Attorney General Mark Herring wrote in mid-September that circuit court clerks, by law, must ask people seeking a marriage license their race, but he said couples can decline to answer the question.