FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Wednesday, March 17, 2021
US House Passes HJ Res 17!
Washington, D.C.: Today the US House passed a joint resolution to remove the arbitrary and capricious time limit on the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) with a bipartisan vote of 222-204.
"This is a historic moment for our country," said Betty Folliard, President Emeritus of ERA Minnesota. "Today's US House ERA vote signals an inflection point, recognizing that women were intentionally left out of the Constitution from its inception and righting that egregious wrong."
"This is one giant step for womankind in our quest to secure the same legal rights as a class as men, as a class, enjoy." said ERA Minnesota President Heather Allison. "The ERA will protect all of us equally under the law against discrimination on the basis of sex. And all means all."
Next steps for this resolution is to go to the US Senate for adoption where it has been given a priority number of SJ Res 1.
by Betty Folliard
Our national partners ERA Coalition will host a live celebration and watch party for the upcoming House vote, this WEDNESDAY (3/17)! The debate starts at 2:30 PM CT-----Vote at 3:30 PM CT.
They'll start the conversation before the floor speeches begin, and then we can watch the floor speeches. Afterwards we’re invited to join in on the celebration, featuring some special guests, coalition members, and elected officials.
You can watch the full livestream on ERA Coalition Facebook page.
This vote and the watch party is slated to happen on Wednesday, but the time is still in flux with the US House, so keep an eye on www.Facebook.com/ERAcoalition.
Dear ERA Coalition Lead Organizations and Advocates,
Welcome to House vote week! I am writing to share some important resources and updates with you as we all prepare for this week’s exciting events.
Take Action with our House Vote Share Kit!
In advance of the House vote we want to make sure that the members of Congress are hearing from us that we want them to vote for HJ Res 17 when it is on the floor. Please use, and widely share, our share kit with graphics and posts. I’m also including a link to our updated action alert page for you to share with your netowrks.
Link to ERA House Vote Share Kit: House Vote Share Kit
Link to Updated Action Alert: Take Action
Link to watch Rules Committee meeting on HJ Res 17- Tuesday at 11:00 a.m. The Rules Committee will meet to establish the rules for the House vote which will take place on Wednesday. We’ve heard that the ERA will likely be debated late Tuesday afternoon. We will send out a notice when it is about to be brought up.
Announcement of Rules Committee meeting: Meeting Announcement for Tuesday, March 16, 2021 | House of Representatives Committee on Rules
Watch stream of the Rules Committee meeting here: House of Representatives Committee on Rules |
Date/Timing of Vote
The House will bring the ERA to the floor for a vote this Wednesday, March 17th. The House is also planning to vote on the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act (VAWA) the same day and we don’t yet have confirmation which bill will hit the floor first. We are told that General Debate on the ERA will begin around 12:00 pm and that a vote is expected to begin around 3:30 pm with final passage around 4:15 pm.
Join us for a celebration of the House Vote!
The ERA Coalition will be hosting a live Zoom event and invite all our partners to join us. We will be streaming this event on Facebook as well. Feel free to invite your friends to the Facebook event!
We be inviting members of Congress, celebrities and advocates from across the country to join us before the House begins it debate and after it finishes during the vote to talk about what this means, where we go next, and celebrate the win together! You can register at the link below:
Event info for RSVP (date and time will change).
Register in advance for this meeting at:
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting. The date and time will change as soon as we have firm confirmation of the start time, but we’ll be in touch with registrants with the new date/time as soon as we have it.
Bettina Hager (she/her)
DC Director & Director, Outreach and Advocacy | ERA Coalition/Fund for Women's Equality (FFWE)
By Betty Folliard
ERA Members - I have good news and bad news:
First the good news:
You may have seen info I shared on social media regarding the intention of the US Speaker of the House to bring up HJRes17 - Congresswoman Jackie Speier’s bill to remove the extra-textual time limit on the ERA - next week! The plan is to hear it on Monday 3/15, if nothing else interferes, as that day is RBG’s birthday.
And to our advantage, because the US House has a rule that a bill which has had a hearing in committee in a recent previous session does not have to go through that process again and can go directly to the House Floor, we may get a vote on this bill as early as Monday.
The result of this action will put additional emphasis on getting POTUS (President of the United States) & the brand new White House Gender Policy Council to act on the ERA. That coupled with Merrick Garland’s nomination moving forward may get positive results out of the DOJ sooner rather than later to reverse the toxic Trump DOJ ‘opinion’ that stopped the Archivist from publishing the ERA. That’s good news all around!
One further note: on the litigation the judge who ruled against the AG’s lawsuit left the door open on the ERA for Congressional action. So let’s make sure they get that time limit removed!
One thing I know is that activists for the ERA never take No for an answer, but we can redirect our passion to federal action this week. You can use this ERA Coalition form to thank co-sponsors & to encourage those who are not on the bill yet to be co-sponsors of the federal ERA by signing up here: http://www.eracoalition.org/take-action/era-time-limit-removal-bills
Now the bad news:
I heard the final word from the MN House Judiciary Chair - something she signaled to many this week - that there simply was not room in committee to hear our bills before the first deadline today. This was due to time constraints and the pressure of passing a budget while dealing with the Covid pandemic and all while working under difficulties of for the first time holding Zoom remote committee meetings. Also there were delays in getting our bills out earlier because of internal snafus at the legislature, and late bill introductions due to remote working environments and abnormally slow Revisor’s office bill jacketing.
I have heard from several of our MN House bill chief authors expressing their regret and readiness to charge ahead next year. In the MN Senate, there was no chance of action; though Sandy Pappas told me that, in her conversation with Majority Leader Paul Gazelka, he gave a hard no to this year but said “maybe’ next year. That was the most hopeful word we’re hear from him in 5 years. (I can’t tell you the disappointment I feel, but we will prevail.)
But there is light at the end of the tunnel on the state ERA front:
Judiciary Chair Becker-Finn is a supporter of the ERA and has promised to hear all of our bills next session - still in time for the state ERA to be added to the 2022 General Election ballot. That is good news indeed.
AND - In the meantime, for our federal ERA Resolution to Congress push; Rep. Frank Hornstein is circulating a letter today - to garner signatures of as many legislators as he can - to send to Congress this coming Monday (3/15) asking our Congressional delegation to vote yes on HJRes17. He did not just look at what we can’t do, but looked for what we can do, and we applaud his initiative.
This past week saw an extraordinary push from ERA activists on the state level and we should be very proud of the work we have done thus far. We lifted the banner of ERA in spite of extraordinary headwinds of a global pandemic. Now let’s see where we can get nationally this next week.
ERA Minnesota (ERAMN) is a coalition of individuals and organizations working to secure an Equal Rights Amendment to the State and Federal Constitutions.