FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 23, 2019
Lt. Governor Justin Fairfax Statement on the Equal Rights Amendment
RICHMOND, VA — Yesterday, a House subcommittee voted 4-2 along party lines to stop Virginia from becoming the 38th state to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment to the U S. Constitution.
For 47 years. Virginia has prevented women in the Commonwealth and across the country from having their right to equal treatment under the law affirmed in the Constitution. It is long past time for Virginia to do its part in ensuring the rights of women throughout our country.
This year, the Senate by a vote of 24-16 advanced the cause of ratification. The House Republican caucus could easily have made sure that a vote on the ERA reached the House floor.
Were the ERA to get to the House floor, it would likely prevail. According to a recent poll conducted by the Wason Center, 81 percent of Virginia voters support ratifying the ERA. Instead, House Republicans left it up to a four-person vote in a subcommittee to prevent a floor vote from happening.
Equality for women should not be the subject of political gamesmanship.
We should be taking actions, like the ratification of the ERA, to expand the cause of equality, justice, fairness, and opportunity.
It is time for the House to put Virginia squarely on the right side of history.