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Maloney Votes to Advance Equal Rights Amendment

Feb 13, 2020
Press Release

Maloney Votes to Advance Equal Rights Amendment

Washington, D.C. – Today, Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (NY-18) voted to pass H.J.Res. 79, a bipartisan resolution advancing the adoption of the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) to the Constitution by removing an arbitrary deadline previously set by Congress for states to ratify the amendment. Removing the 1982 deadline is a critical step toward ensuring the ERA officially becomes the 28th Amendment to the Constitution, and finally creates a constitutional guarantee for women to combat discrimination on the basis of sex.

“As a Congressman and the father of two amazing young women, I believe that anything less than equal protections under the law for women is unacceptable,” said Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney. “Though this Constitutional amendment was proposed nearly 100 years ago, previous generations of leaders haven’t been able to get it ratified. Women still face inequality, from sexual harassment to the wage gap, and it’s long-past time we change that. I’m proud to support this resolution to move the Equal Rights Amendment – and our country – forward.”

The Equal Rights Amendment states: “Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or any State on account of sex.”

The ERA was first proposed in 1923, three years after women gained the right to vote. It was supported by both parties under Presidents Nixon, Carter and Ford. The 1971 and 1972 versions of the ERA had a clause requiring it be ratified by 1979, which was later extended to 1982. By 1982, 35 of the 38 required state legislatures voted to ratify the ERA, but the measure ultimately failed because of a handful of hold-out states. If passed by the Senate, this resolution would strike the 1982 deadline, allowing the final three states to count towards the 38 needed for ratification of the constitutional amendment.

The Equal Rights Amendment has broad support from organizations across the country, including the ERA Coalition, the National Organization for Women, the YWCA, the League of Women Voters, the National Women’s Law Center, the American Civil Liberties Union, the American Association of University Women, Feminist Majority, GLAAD, National Association of Women Lawyers, the National Alliance to End Sexual Violence, the Alice Paul Institute, and the U.S. Women’s Chamber of Commerce among others.