In Congress

ERA Ratification Bills in the 113th Congress (2013-2014)

Two different types of ERA legislation have been introduced in the 2013-2014 session of Congress:

  • Traditional legislation to ratify the ERA by the Constitution's Article V ratification process, and
  • "Three-state strategy" legislation to remove the time limit on the ERA's ratification process and declare it complete when three-fourths (38) of the states ratify, thereby retaining the existing 35 state ratifications as viable.

Traditional legislation


Sen. Menendez

Senate:  Senate Joint Resolution 10  (S.J. Res. 10)

(For information regarding this bill, go to THOMAS, select "Bill Number," search on "S.J. Res. 10.")

Lead sponsor: Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ); 16 co-sponsors
Introduced March 5, 2013; read twice and referred to the Committee on the Judiciary

Text:

Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of the United States relative to equal rights for men and women.

Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled (two-thirds of each House concurring therein), That the following article is proposed as an amendment to the Constitution of the United States, which shall be valid to all intents and purposes as part of the Constitution when ratified by the legislatures of three-fourths of the several States:

'Article--

'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 article shall take effect 2 years after the date of ratification.'


Rep. Maloney

House of Representatives:  House Joint Resolution 56  (H.J. Res. 56)

(For information regarding this bill, go to THOMAS, select "Bill Number," search on "H.J. Res. 56.")

Lead sponsor: Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY); 173 co-sponsors
Introduced August 1, 2013; referred to House Committee on the Judiciary

Text:

Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of the United States relative to equal rights for men and women.

Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled (two-thirds of each House concurring therein), That the following article is proposed as an amendment to the Constitution of the United States, which shall be valid to all intents and purposes as part of the Constitution when ratified by the legislatures of three-fourths of the several States:

'Article--

'Section 1. 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.

'Section 2. Congress and the several States 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.'


Note: The wording of H.J. Res. 56 differs slightly from S.J. Res. 10 and the Equal Rights Amendment passed by Congress in 1972.

In Section 1, the first sentence has been added to include women specifically in the Constitution and to clarify the intent of the amendment to make discrimination on the basis of a person's sex unconstitutional.  It is adapted from the text of Alice Paul's original 1923 Equal Rights Amendment. The second sentence is identical to the wording of S.J. Res. 10 and the 1972 ERA.

In Section 2, the addition of "and the several States" restores wording that was supported by Alice Paul but that was removed before the amendment's passage in 1972.  It affirms that enforcement of the constitutional prohibition of sex discrimination is a function of both federal and state levels of government. 

"Three-state strategy" legislation


Sen. Cardin

Senate:  Senate Joint Resolution 15 (S.J. Res. 15)

(For information regarding this bill, go to THOMAS, select "Bill Number," search on "S.J. Res. 15.")

Lead sponsor: Sen. Benjamin Cardin (D-MD); 34 co-sponsors, including lead Republican
co-sponsor Sen. Mark Kirk (R-IL)
Introduced May 9, 2013; read twice and referred to the Committee on the Judiciary.

Text:

Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That notwithstanding any time limit contained in House Joint Resolution 208, 92d Congress, as agreed to in the Senate on March 22, 1972, the article of amendment proposed to the States in that joint resolution shall be valid to all intents and purposes as part of the Constitution whenever ratified by the legislatures of three-fourths of the several States.





Rep. Speier
House of Representatives:  House Joint Resolution 113 (H.J. Res. 113)

(For information regarding this bill, go to THOMAS, select "Bill Number," search on "H.J. Res. 113.")

Lead sponsor: Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA); 109 co-sponsors
Referred to the House Committee on the Judiciary.

Text:

Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That notwithstanding any time limit contained in House Joint Resolution 208, 92d Congress, as agreed to in the Senate on March 22, 1972, the article of amendment proposed to the States in that joint resolution shall be valid to all intents and purposes as part of the Constitution whenever ratified by the legislatures of three-fourths of the several States.

Note: Rep. Robert Andrews (D-NJ), lead sponsor of three-state strategy legislation (H.J. Res. 43) at the start of the 113th Congress, resigned from the House, and the bill was reintroduced on March 27, 2014, with a new lead sponsor and bill number.