RICHMOND, Va. -

Every year there's at least one bill that takes state lawmakers by surprise.
And this year, it involves a geography lesson thousands of miles from Virginia.

At issue is the body of water between Korea and Japan.
It's identified on maps as the Sea of Japan, but House Bill 11 would require textbooks to note that it's also known as the East Sea.

Korean Americans have lobbied for the bill, but during the House floor session on Wednesday, Delegate Joe Morrisey questioned whether the state should be involved in an international debate.

"Will we be visiting a bill next year changing the name of the English Channel," Morrisey asked, "or how about the body of water between Ireland and England, The Irish Sea."

The House advanced  the bill to a final vote expected on Wednesday.