Senate to Vote on ERA Despite Expiration in 1982
Democrats are living in a fairy tale over the Equal Rights Amendment and would do well to take a note from Disney’s “Frozen” and “Let It Go.”
The ERA expired in 1982, yet Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer says the Senate will vote on the amendment this week.
“In this ominous hour of American history, the Equal Rights Amendment has never been as necessary and urgent as it is today,” Schumer said in a statement Monday.
Schumer says the Senate will vote to advance the amendment Thursday.
After Congress passed the ERA in March 1972, three-fourths of states had to ratify it within seven years for the amendment to be added to the Constitution. While 35 states ratified the amendment, it failed to gain ratification of the required 38 states, even after the expiration deadline was extended to 1982.
Despite the amendment expiring, Nevada and Illinois ratified the ERA in 2017 and 2018, respectively. Virginia followed suit in 2020, becoming the 38th state to approve the amendment.
Now, the Senate is voting on a measure to remove the expiration date from the amendment, with the ultimate aim of adding the amendment to the Constitution.
The amendment reads: “Women shall have equal rights in the United States and every place subject to its jurisdiction. Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.”
In addition to concerns over ignoring the legal expiration date on the amendment, opponents have expressed worry over the interpretation of the word “sex” within the amendment. The Biden administration is working to redefine the word “sex” in Title IX to include gender identity and sexual orientation. This means that the passage of the ERA could open the door permanently for men to compete in women’s sports and enter female-only spaces, such as bathrooms.
Opponents of the ERA have also raised the issue that Democrats are seeking to pass it to restore broad abortion access across the country. Because the amendment removes a distinction between men and women, if passed, “all legal distinctions between men and women [would be treated] as a form of discrimination,” Emma Waters, a Heritage Foundation research associate, said. (The Daily Signal is the news outlet of The Heritage Foundation.)
If Congress desires to pass an amendment that declares equal rights for women, even though the Constitution already provides women equal rights, it should do as the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg suggested and “start over.”
On today’s edition of the “Problematic Women” podcast, we explain where the battle over the ERA stands. Plus, Tucker Carlson has left Fox News. We speculate why. And the Supreme Court has ruled that for now, the abortion pill can still be used to terminate pregnancy. And as always, we’ll be crowning our “Problematic Woman of the Week.”
Listen to the podcast below: