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Virginia's 14th congressional district

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Virginia Congressional District 14 is an obsolete congressional district. It was eliminated in 1853 after the 1850 U.S. Census. Its last Congressman was James M. H. Beale.

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  • ✪ Loving v. Virginia Summary |
  • ✪ Political Upset Shocks Democrats - ENN 2018-06-27
  • ✪ VOA News for Thursday, May 23rd, 2019


- [Narrator] On a hot summer night in 1958, law enforcement officers burst into the bedroom of Mildred and Richard Loving and placed them under arrest. The Lovings hadn't gone on a crime spree, but they were public enemies in the eyes of the Commonwealth of Virginia. Mr. and Mrs. Loving were thrown in jail for getting married, an act prohibited in Virginia all because the Lovings didn't share the same skin color. The legal battle that followed culminated in the United States Supreme Court decision of Loving versus Virginia, which would forever cast the Lovings among the heroes of the Civil Rights movement. Richard Loving, a white man, and Mildred Loving, a African American and Native American woman, were married in Washington, DC after falling in love as teenagers in rural Virginia. However, their return to Virginia and cohabitation as husband and wife violated the Commonwealth's anti miscegenation law known as the Racial Integrity Act. The act forbade interracial marriages, specifically marriages between white people and those who qualified as quote colored, unquote. After their arrest, both Mr. and Mrs. Loving pled guilty to violating the anti miscegenation law. Rather than serving one year in prison, the Lovings accepted a suspended sentence and were banished from Virginia for 25 years. The Lovings later filed a motion to vacate the state court judgment, which the trial court denied. The Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals affirmed. The United States Supreme Court granted cert. The issue before the court was whether a state law prohibiting marriage exclusively on the basis of race was constitutional under the 14th Amendment. In an opinion by Chief Justice Warren, the court unanimously held that state interracial marriage bans violate both the Equal Protection Clause and the Due Process Clause of the 14th Amendment. In so doing, the court applied strict scrutiny. To pass strict scrutiny, a law's use of racial classifications must be necessary to further a compelling state interest, and be narrowly tailored to further that interest. On the Equal Protection issue, Virginia contented that a more deferential, rational basis analysis should apply because the statue punished members of both races equally. The court rejected this argument, noting that the law forbade only interracial marriages involving white persons. The court determined that the statute drew a racial classification on it's face, thus warranting strict scrutiny. Applying the test, the court ruled that Virginia's anti-miscegenation law, which was based entirely on racial distinctions, could have no legitimate purpose other than to perpetuate racial discrimination. The court concluded the law had been created to further white supremacy. Further, the court reasoned that the restriction on the freedom to marry violated the principle purpose of the Equal Protection Clause, which was to eliminate racial discrimination perpetrated by states. In addition to invalidating the statute on Equal Protection grounds, the court also held that the law violated the Lovings' due process rights, emphasizing the long standing importance of the individual right to marry, the court held and individual's choice to marry may not be invaded by the state. In the court's view, depriving individuals of such a fundamental right on the basis of race, violated the due process clause. Accordingly, the court reversed the judgment of the Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals, and overturned the Lovings' convictions. Justice Stewart wrote separately to emphasize his continued belief that laws criminalizing behavior only when perpetrated by a member of a particular race are repugnant to the Constitution. Loving was a major step forward for the Civil Rights Movement. The court's ruling invalidated interracial marriage bans in 16 states. The ruling also affirmed the importance of personal choice in the exercise of the freedom to marry. Nearly half a century later, the court invoked it's decision in Loving as a binding precedent to extend marriage equality to same sex couples in the landmark case Obergefell versus Hodges. Citing the fundamental nature of the marriage right, the court affirmed in Obergefell that which had been first decided by Loving, that love wins.

List of members representing the district

District created March 4, 1793.

Member Party Term Electoral history
Francis Walker of Castle Hill Albemarle County Virginia.png

Francis Walker
Anti-Administration March 4, 1793 –
March 3, 1795
Elected in 1793.
Samuel J. Cabell Democratic-Republican March 4, 1795 –
March 3, 1803
Elected in 1795.
Re-elected in 1797.
Re-elected in 1799.
Re-elected in 1801.
Redistricted to the 21st district and lost re-election.
Matthew Clay Democratic-Republican March 4, 1803 –
March 3, 1813
Redistricted from the 6th district and re-elected in 1803.
Re-elected in 1805.
Re-elected in 1807.
Re-elected in 1809.
Re-elected in 1811.
Redistricted to the 15th district and lost re-election.

William A. Burwell
Democratic-Republican March 4, 1813 –
February 16, 1821
Redistricted from the 13th district and re-elected in 1813.
Re-elected in 1815.
Re-elected in 1817.
Vacant February 17, 1821 –
March 3, 1821
Jabez Leftwich Democratic-Republican March 4, 1821 –
March 3, 1823
[Data unknown/missing.]
Redistricted to the 7th district.
Charles F. Mercer.jpg

Charles F. Mercer
Crawford Democratic-Republican March 4, 1823 –
March 3, 1825
[Data unknown/missing.]
Anti-Jacksonian March 4, 1825 –
March 3, 1837
Whig March 4, 1837 –
December 26, 1839
Vacant December 27, 1839 –
January 24, 1840
William M. McCarty Whig January 25, 1840 –
March 3, 1841
Elected to finish Mercer's term.
Lost re-election.
Cuthbert Powell Whig March 4, 1841 –
March 3, 1843
[Data unknown/missing.]
Lost re-election.

George W. Summers
Whig March 4, 1843 –
March 3, 1845
[Data unknown/missing.]
Lost re-election.
Joseph Johnson.png

Joseph Johnson
Democratic March 4, 1845 –
March 3, 1847
[Data unknown/missing.]
Robert A. Thompson Democratic March 4, 1847 –
March 3, 1849
[Data unknown/missing.]
James M. H. Beale Democratic March 4, 1849 –
March 3, 1853
[Data unknown/missing.]

District eliminated March 4, 1853.


  • Martis, Kenneth C. (1989). The Historical Atlas of Political Parties in the United States Congress. New York: Macmillan Publishing Company.
  • Martis, Kenneth C. (1982). The Historical Atlas of United States Congressional Districts. New York: Macmillan Publishing Company.
  • Congressional Biographical Directory of the United States 1774–present

This page was last edited on 3 June 2019, at 10:51
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