Bid to revive Equal Rights Amendment fails by 1 vote

Bid to revive Equal Rights Amendment fails by 1 vote
Advocates for the Equal Rights Amendment lined up on the steps of the State Capitol in early February.

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT/AP) - A renewed push to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment in Virginia failed by a single vote on Thursday.

The House of Delegates vote deadlocked 50-50 on a bid to force a full floor on the gender-equality measure Thursday, the Associated Press reported. The tie vote meant the effort failed.

Democrats, noting the resolution had enough Republican support to pass were it called for a vote, had proposed two potential changes to House rules that would send it to the floor despite the fact that it was voted down by the House subcommittee to which it was referred.

Both proposed rules changes failed, one on a party-line vote, another on a 50-50 tie, in which Del. David Yancey, R-Newport News, joined with Democrats, Virginia Mercury reported.

ERA proponents had hoped Virginia will become the 38th state to approve the amendment, according to the AP. It would then have met the threshold for ratification in the U.S. Constitution.

But even if it’s ratified, court battles would likely ensue over a long-passed 1982 deadline set by Congress.

The defeat prompted light applause from opponents of the measure and jeering from supporters, Virginia Mercury reported.

“Shame on Virginia,” shouted one advocate in the House gallery.

“I’m disgusted,” shouted another as she was led out by police.

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