Judge to rule next week on Dems' injunction motion

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A Richmond judge says she will rule next week on Democrats' request for a preliminary injunction to stop Republicans from taking a controlling majority in the evenly divided Virginia Senate.

Circuit Judge Beverly Snukals took the matter under advisement Friday after hearing arguments from attorneys for Democratic state Sen. Donald McEachin and Republican Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling, who presides over the Senate.

McEachin has filed a lawsuit asking the court to prevent Bolling from casting the decisive 21st vote in favor of the GOP when the 40-member Senate organizes next month. Democrats claim the Virginia Constitution bars Bolling from voting on internal rules and organizational issues, as well as some types of legislation. They want a power-sharing arrangement.

The issue must be resolved quickly. The General Assembly convenes in January.