On the anniversary of the Equal Rights Amendment

By Tammy Baldwin on
March 22, 2012
Tammy Baldwin

If you've picked up the newspaper, turned on the news, or visited this blog recently, you know the right-wing is waging a war on women. The extreme conservatives would rather debate reproductive freedom, women's health, or even topics like birth control that have been decided for decades, instead of talking about the issue on everyone's minds -- jobs And while the intensity of these renewed attacks may be unprecedented, sadly the overall assault is nothing new.

Forty years ago today, Congress took the first steps to add an Equal Rights Amendment to our Constitution - a step that was the culmination of efforts from countless dedicated activists demanding full social, economic, and political equality for women.

As we know now, though efforts were immense, the ERA has not been ratified. But I've introduced legislation to make a new attempt to pass the Equal Rights Amendment, and I'm proud to announce that Senator Ben Cardin is introducing the companion resolution to my House measure.

In my home state of Wisconsin, one needs look no further than our statehouse to see just how important the ERA remains today. Just weeks ago, the Wisconsin state legislature passed a measure to roll back progress made on equal pay, removing the circuit courts' ability to enforce violations. And as I look around the country, I see many similar measures -- attacks on women's rights and women's basic health care are being launched in statehouses and the halls of Congress.

Throughout this month, as we celebrate women's history, it is important to reflect how far we've come towards equality - yet not forget what remains to be done. As Americans, we hold fast to the Constitution as our guarantee of freedom and equality. The Equal Rights Amendment would protect ours and future generations from gender discrimination.

Tammy Baldwin is running for US Senate, and if elected would be the first woman senator from Wisconsin and the nation's first openly gay senator. Learn more.

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