For Women Only!

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By Richard E Walrath and Patricia L Johnson

Which will come first?  Passage of the Equal Rights Amendment or a woman president?  Both look a long way off.  The question that must be asked is if the U.S. can ever have a woman president without first having equal rights for women?

The Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) was written in 1923 by Alice Paul.  It consists of the following three sentences:

THE EQUAL RIGHTS AMENDMENT

Section 1.

Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of sex.

Section 2. The Congress shall have the power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article.

Section 3. This amendment shall take effect two years after the date of ratification.

In 1971 the ERA bill was approved by the U.S. House by a vote of 354-24, and on March 22, 1972  U.S. Senate passed the bill by a vote of 84-8.  http://www.now.org/issues/economic/cea/history.html

There are two separate ways a proposed amendment to the U.S. Constitution may be made, one has never been used, so the most common is for the bill to be sent to the individual state legislatures for ratification, or approval.  Generally there is a time limit placed on the bill and was originally set at 7 years.  Since the ERA amendment was not ratified within the original 7 year period, a bill has been reintroduced into Congress each year. 

The ERA bill now has 35 of the 38 states necessary for ratification.  Once three more states ratify the bill, it will become the 28th amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

The following states have failed to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment, ERA. 

Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Utah and Virginia.

What is interesting about the listing of states that have not ratified the Equal Rights Amendment is the fact all, with the exception of Illinois, are considered "Red" states as apposed to "Blue". 

Red States vote Republican–doesn’t matter who is running.  Since the Civil Rights bill was passed under LBJ, the Solid South turned Solid Red.  Missouri is a swing state.  It votes with the winner.  As you can see from the map, Bush took all the non-ratifying states except Illinois, in 2004.

Barack Obama claims to be a civil rights advocate and is from the State of Illinois, the only blue state NOT to ratify the ERA.  Not only is Illinois the home state of the U.S. Senator, it’s also a state where he served in the legislature, and considered himself "a leader in the Illinois State Senate".

ERA was big news back in the 70’s.  It was ancient history by the time Obama was old enough to think about it. 

Obama is 46 years old.  In the almost twenty years since he got out of school (Harvard Law School), he’s written two auto-biographies, worked as a community organizer (not quite sure exactly what that entails).  He served in the state legislature and, since 2005 has been in the U. S. Senate.  Oh, yes, and he spent some time in a corporate law office.

The ERA amendment not only has not been ratified by the State of Illinois, the State of Illinois changed the rules on how many votes were required for ratification: http://www.equalrightsamendment.org/era.htm

"Illinois changed its rules to require a three-fifths majority to ratify an amendment, thereby ensuring that their repeated simple majority votes in favor of the ERA did not count."

Why is it that no one in the media has ever questioned Obama on this subject or any other subject of merit?

If ever anybody got a free ride from the media, Obama is it.

 

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