Court Battles

Ginsburg says ‘we still’ need an Equal Rights Amendment to make US ‘more perfect’


Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said Monday the U.S. still needs an Equal Rights Amendment, days before the House is set to decide whether to remove the deadline to ratify the amendment. 

Ginsburg spoke at a Georgetown Law School event Monday almost 100 years after women voted in their first presidential election. The justice mentioned how the National Woman’s Party viewed the 19th Amendment that gave women the right to vote as “the beginning” after courts interpreted the amendment to only apply to voting rights. 

“Their idea was the 19th Amendment was the beginning, but women should have equality in all fields of human endeavor, so we needed an Equal Rights Amendment,” she said. “And I think, at least in my view, we still do.”

She said the U.S. would be “more perfect” if “our fundamental instrument of government” included a statement designating men and women of equal citizenship statures.

“My notion was I would like to show my granddaughters that the equal citizenship stature of men and women is a fundamental human right,” she said. “It should be right up there with free speech freedom of religion and discrimination based on race, national origin.”

Ginsburg’s comments come as the House plans to vote on legislation to get rid of the deadline to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment on Friday. The vote was scheduled after Virginia became the 38th state to ratify the amendment last month, decades after the deadline. 

But Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) has hinted he isn’t in support of the amendment.

Tags 19th Amendment Equal Rights Amendment ERA Mitch McConnell Ruth Bader Ginsburg Sex discrimination Supreme Court
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