(Most of) Minnesota House Says Yes to Equal Rights Amendment Resolution

Green votes are Minnesota House members in favor of equal rights for women in Minnesota. Red votes are against it.

From a Minnesota House news release

May 11 — The Minnesota House of Representatives passed HF197, a resolution to Congress to affirm the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) as the 28th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. The resolution directs the Minnesota Secretary of State to send the memorial to the President of the United States, Congressional leadership, and members of the United States Congress.

The bill, authored by Representative Kristin Bahner (D–Maple Grove), passed on a vote of 69-51.

“Our founding documents contain soaring rhetoric on the pursuit of life and liberty, freedom and equality, but women have long been denied this promise under the very laws provided to protect us.  We seek no favor for our sex, merely the opportunity of equal treatment under the highest law of the land, the U.S. Constitution,” said Rep. Bahner. 

The Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) was first passed by Congress in 1972 and was sent to the states for ratification. Minnesota ratified the ERA in 1973. It guarantees “equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.”

Said Speaker Melissa Hortman, “More than 100 years after women fought for and achieved the right to vote, women still don’t have equality in many areas of our lives, like pay inequity, gender violence, and discrimination that many women still face. It’s long past time that we have an equal rights amendment in the federal constitution.”

The ERA states the amendment will take effect two years after the last constitutionally necessary state ratification occurs. On January 27, 2020, Virginia became the 38th and final state needed to ratify the ERA. Based on the two-year effective period provided for states to prepare for compliance with the law, the 28th Amendment became effective on January 27, 2022. Despite meeting all the requirements of Article V and no legal precedent to deny the 28th Amendment, the archivist has yet to officially publish the amendment.

The adoption of the ERA will help to advance justice for women and girls nearly 100 years after its first introduction.