A federal judge in Harrisonburg on Monday stayed a ruling in Harris v. Rainey, a case aimed at overturning Virginia’s same-sex marriage ban.
Judge Michael Urbanski said the plaintiffs have been permitted to intervene on appeal in Bostic v. Rainey, which is now set for oral argument in the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond on May 13 after a federal judge in Norfolk had ruled Virginia’s marriage amendment unconstitutional.
“Because of this seismic procedural development, the constitutional issue in this case is now in the hands of the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals,” Urbanski wrote. “As the Fourth Circuit’s impending decision is binding, the court will stay this case pending that decision.”
The American Civil Liberties Union of Virginia filed the Harrisonburg suit on behalf of Joanne Harris and Jessica Duff of Staunton and Christy Berghoff and Victoria Kidd of Winchester. The case, which was certified class-action status in January, was the second challenge to Virginia’s same-sex marriage ban, following the Bostic case.