The dream of Virginia becoming the 38th state to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment was put on hold Tuesday by a Republican-controlled House subcommittee.
All four Republican members of Subcommittee No. 1 of the House Privileges and Elections Committee voted against the legislation while the two Democrats voted to advance the ERA bills. Virginia would have been the final state needed to ratify the ERA.
Supporters in the state and across the country who pushed hard to pass the ERA were hopeful after the Virginia Senate approved it on January 15 by a bipartisan vote of 26-14 with 7 Republicans joining all 19 Senate Democrats.
Supporters say they’re still working to pass the resolution, hoping that the full House Privileges and Elections Committee will take up the legislation on Friday. However, none of the 12 Republican members on the 22-member committee have signed on to support the ERA.
Opponents of the ERA, including religious organizations such as the Family Foundation, say its passage would make limiting abortions more difficult.
__ Karen Kirk