June 17, 2024: EQUAL MEANS EQUAL Challenges Administration to Make the Call in Daily Beast Article

June 17, 2024: EQUAL MEANS EQUAL Challenges Administration to Make the Call in Daily Beast Article
June 17, 2024 Robert Wood


This week the Daily Beast published an important article about the ERA, the party politics surrounding it, and the upcoming presidential election.  All Presidential candidates, except for Biden and Trump, committed to ERA publication immediately, if they were elected.  And while EQUAL MEANS EQUAL does not support any particular candidate, as we are, and have always been, a truly non-partisan organization, we made our position clear.

“The unconstitutional governance by the Biden administration is being challenged, and rightfully so,” said EME President Kamala Lopez, who founded the organization in 2009. “This is very good news for our democracy, and it means that Biden needs to publish right away or he will jeopardize his ability to win the election.”

As reporter Lloyd Grove stated in his highly well-researched article,
“The document [the Equal Rights Amendment] was ratified by the necessary 38th state, Virginia, in January 2020, after a five-decade struggle beginning in 1972, when Congress proposed the amendment. Biden has repeatedly lavished praise on the ERA but as president he has refused to order the United States Archivist to publish it in the Federal Register, which would give it the force of law.”

Candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. told The Daily Beast: “The constitution provides a process for its amendment. Those conditions have been fulfilled. The Biden administration should respect the constitution and publish the amendment in the federal register. The amendment has the support of the majority of the American people, and my support as well. [If elected president] I will direct the archivist to publish.”

Democratic strategist James Carville took exception with EQUAL MEANS EQUAL’s strategy and accused us of “election-year blackmail.” “The country can survive without an Equal Rights Amendment. But it can’t survive Donald Trump,”  he said.

Aside from the inherent and tone-deaf privilege displayed by this comment from a wealthy, white man, it seems to us the real blackmail is coming from a party that claims to care about women’s rights but which has overseen the most egregious rollbacks to those same rights in our nation’s history, while refusing to make one three-minute phone call to the Archivist to permanently protect those same rights — all the while threatening us with Donald Trump’s ascension to the White House if we don’t fall in line.

How long will women continue to fall for these disingenuous party politics? When will we realize that until women put our basic human rights first, and achieve legal equality, we will never be able to use our powerful, undervalued skillset to work, assisting the nation and the world regain balance?

Over a hundred years ago Alice Paul and Lucy Burns were told that if they didn’t stop their fight for Suffrage, America would lose the World War (and it would be the women’s fault).  It’s time to reacquaint ourselves with our past and recognize that history is repeating itself.

From EME’s Legal Counsel Wendy Murphy’s groundbreaking new article in the Ohio Northern University Law Review:

“In 1913, in response to congressional inaction, two well-known suffragists, Alice Paul and Lucy Burns, founded the Congressional Union for Woman Suffrage (CUWS) and organized a suffrage parade in Washington D.C., the day before Woodrow Wilson’s inauguration. Thousands of women showed up for what has been called “the first civil rights march on Washington.”
Paul and Burns were fiercely nonpartisan, and were willing to criticize and boycott any politician who refused to support voting rights for women.

They joined forces with the National American Woman Suffrage Association (NAWSA), and their nonpartisan philosophy was initially strong, but opposition grew as some advocates refused to criticize politicians from certain political parties even if they opposed women’s suffrage, so in 1916 Paul and Burns established the National Woman’s Party (NWP)…

The NWP’s platform was simple: adoption of the Woman Suffrage Amendment. The NWP declared itself “united” around the single issue of suffrage “irrespective of the interests of any national political Party” and promised to assert “unceasing opposition to all who oppose this Amendment.

When they met with men from the major political parties who sought their support, the women made clear that they did not care to hear about their party’s platform, and what they would do for women. The only thing the NWP wanted to know was whether the men supported the federal suffrage amendment.”

American women and our allies need to take a page from Burns’ & Paul’s playbook and recognize that when
the civil rights struggle is this important, this monumental, this existential –