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Democrats advance Equal Rights Amendment in Virginia General Assembly committee Democrats advance Equal Rights Amendment in Virginia General Assembly committee
(30 minutes later)
RICHMOND — A Virginia House of Delegates committee controlled by Democrats advanced the Equal Rights Amendment on Tuesday, clearing a hurdle that last year allowed Republicans to prevent the state from ratifying the amendment.RICHMOND — A Virginia House of Delegates committee controlled by Democrats advanced the Equal Rights Amendment on Tuesday, clearing a hurdle that last year allowed Republicans to prevent the state from ratifying the amendment.
A resolution ratifying the amendment passed the House Committee on Privileges and Elections on a party-line vote, 13 to 9. Democrats vowed to pass the ERA when they won majorities in both houses of the General Assembly during elections in fall 2019. A resolution ratifying the amendment passed the House Committee on Privileges and Elections on a party-line vote, 13 to 9. Democrats promised to pass the ERA when they won majorities in both houses of the General Assembly during elections in fall 2019.
Last year, the state Senate approved the ERA with bipartisan support. But a House subcommittee controlled by Republicans killed the resolution, preventing it from going to the full committee for a vote.Last year, the state Senate approved the ERA with bipartisan support. But a House subcommittee controlled by Republicans killed the resolution, preventing it from going to the full committee for a vote.
Del. Jennifer D. Carroll Foy (D-Prince William), who sponsored the resolution, told the committee Tuesday that it would be historic for Virginia to become the 38th — and potentially final — state to ratify the amendment guaranteeing equal protection for women under the U.S. Constitution.Del. Jennifer D. Carroll Foy (D-Prince William), who sponsored the resolution, told the committee Tuesday that it would be historic for Virginia to become the 38th — and potentially final — state to ratify the amendment guaranteeing equal protection for women under the U.S. Constitution.
“There’s not many times that what we do here in this body, this committee, will be felt throughout this country,” Carroll Foy said.“There’s not many times that what we do here in this body, this committee, will be felt throughout this country,” Carroll Foy said.
Republicans on the committee questioned whether Virginia’s action would have any impact. The U.S. Justice Department said earlier this month that too many deadlines had passed and the ERA could no longer be ratified.Republicans on the committee questioned whether Virginia’s action would have any impact. The U.S. Justice Department said earlier this month that too many deadlines had passed and the ERA could no longer be ratified.
On Tuesday, Michelle Kallen, Virginia’s deputy solicitor general, told the committee that state Attorney General Mark R. Herring believes the amendment is still viable.On Tuesday, Michelle Kallen, Virginia’s deputy solicitor general, told the committee that state Attorney General Mark R. Herring believes the amendment is still viable.
The full House is set to vote on the ERA on Wednesday. The Senate, which has approved the amendment for the past several years, also passed the bill out of committee on Tuesday and will take it up Wednesday on the floor.The full House is set to vote on the ERA on Wednesday. The Senate, which has approved the amendment for the past several years, also passed the bill out of committee on Tuesday and will take it up Wednesday on the floor.
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