The Virginia Senate has followed the lead of the House of Delegates and approved a bill with a 22-18 vote that would require public universities to fund student groups that discriminate. Sen. Adam Ebbin (D), the only openly gay legislator in the state, made clear the intention of the bill in no uncertain terms:
EBBIN: Virginia law and Federal Law allow discrimination against gay people, and that’s what this bill is about – plain and simple. It’s not about freedom of expression, because groups are allowed to express themselves any way they want. It’s about using tax payer dollars to fund discrimination.
Indeed, any campus group that chooses to discriminate against gay students would still be able to access student fees that those gay students pay into under this bill. The bill’s sponsor, Sen. Mark Obenshain (R), claimed that the bill is important to prevent a non-vegan from leading a vegan club. Apparently, Obenshain doesn’t trust Virginia university students to elect club leaders that uphold the values of their organizations.
Gov. Bob McDonnell (R) is expected to sign the legislation.