This Women’s History Month, I am grateful for all the trailblazing women who have set extraordinary examples and advocated for equal rights and opportunities. They have paved the way for generations of women, including me, and I thank them.
Many of these tireless advocates have been hard at work here in Virginia for years working to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA), and in 2020, Virginia became the 38th and final state necessary to ratify the ERA. The ERA would finally enshrine the rights of women in our nation’s founding document, but the process is not complete. Years ago, Congress put a deadline on the ratification of these simple words, and we have long passed it.
"Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of sex. The Congress shall have the power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article." - Equal Rights Amendment
However, in celebration of the advocates who have worked for years, undeterred by the notion that equality has a deadline and undeterred by the idea that the ERA’s time had passed, I will vote to remove the deadline for ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment as we take our next step towards Constitutional equality in our country.