Virginia bill to impeach pro-gay judges dies
January 21 2004 1:00 AM ET
A Virginia house committee killed a bill Monday that sought to impeach judges who rule that the state's ban on same-sex marriages is unconstitutional. Delegate Robert G. Marshall's bill failed to move out of the courts of justice committee, 18-3. Under the legislation, judges would have been deemed to commit "malfeasance in office" by ruling in support of gay marriages, making them subject to impeachment under the Virginia constitution. Marshall said the bill was intended to prevent gay rights activists from petitioning the courts to change the state's law against gay marriage. But Delegate Brian J. Moran (D-Alexandria) said Marshall's bill was "clearly unconstitutional.... We don't tell judges how to rule. It's a silly method if he wants to voice his support of the [gay marriage] statute.... He should issue a press release and not spend taxpayer money debating it here."