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Va Students Push Against AG Order


University students in Virginia on Monday pushed against an order from state attorney general Ken Cuccinelli that public universities should drop sexual orientation from their nondiscrimination policies.

Cuccinelli sent a letter to schools last week, saying that only the general assembly has the authority to extend legal protections. The Republican-led House of Delegates recently defeated the latest attempt to extend the protections.

In addition to thousands of students who joined Facebook pages against the order, others not on spring break planned rallies this week, according to The Washington Post.

"Students at Virginia Commonwealth University, one of the few in the state not on break, planned a rally for noon Wednesday, with several hundred students committed. At Christopher Newport University, student Republican and Democratic leaders will discuss their next steps at a bipartisan meeting Friday," reported the Post.

Industry leaders also worry that rescinding the protections, which are in place at all the state's largest schools, could reduce the competitiveness of Virginia's higher-education system.

According to the Post, Gov. Bob McDonnell, who ran on a ticket with Cuccinelli last fall, supports the legal reasoning of his attorney general's letter but says he is personally opposed to discrimination. Democratic lawmakers are calling on him to push for a bill that protects against antigay discrimination.

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