The Senate’s Tuesday morning Judiciary Committee hearing on the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) was interrupted several times by women claiming that pro-life and other conservative positions are causing women to “die every day.”
Disgruntled women shouted grievances from the gallery where dozens gathered to observe the hearing. Security escorted the protesters out of the room — though proceedings were interrupted for several minutes.
The first outburst occurred after Jennifer Braceras offered testimony opposing altering the well-established ERA proposition.
Divided We Fall reported that those opposing the current push for a new ERA argue that “the U.S. Supreme Court has consistently ruled for decades that the Equal Protection Clause of the  Fourteenth Amendment protects women from unequal treatment under the law.”
The 1971 landmark ruling in 1971 Reed v. Reed affirmed the 1923 Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment and prohibits discrimination against women. In 1996 the United States v. Virginia case also affirmed women’s rights. The Court wrote:
“Since Reed, the Court has repeatedly recognized that neither federal nor state government acts compatibly with equal protection when a law or official policy denies to women, simply because they are women, full citizenship stature-equal opportunity to aspire, achieve, participate in and contribute to society based on their individual talents and capacities.”
In 2011, the American Civil Liberties Union Women’s Rights Project Director, Lenora Lapidus, said: “Since the 1971 case, Reed v. Reed, it has been clearly understood that the 14th Amendment prohibits discrimination based on sex. In decision after decision, many authored by conservative Supreme Court justices, this principle has been reaffirmed.”
Various advocacy groups have also noted that the Equal Pay and Civil Rights Acts guarantee wage equity protection for women.
Divided We Fall asserts the push for a renewed ERA centers on a desire for federally funded “near-unrestricted abortion.”
Proponents of the ERA argue that “women of Color and transgender women/girls, gender-expansive individuals, and those who are most vulnerable to systemic inequities” must be protected by new laws.
The Judiciary Committee hearing was interrupted three times by protesters — the first shouted that women would “die every day” if Congress did not pass the proposed new EPA.
The protester claimed existing protection laws “were being ignored” and that “poor women have no choice; they have been locked out of this process.”
The second interruption occurred when a protester shouted, “this [discussion] is illegal; it is a fraud. Women [must] have equal rights right now!”
The third interruption occurred when a protester claimed, “Congress does not want to serve us.”
Congressional Democrats are seeking laws to affirm unrestricted abortion, gender transition procedures for youth and the green light for biological male athletes who identify as female to participate in women’s sports.
In her testimony, Braceras noted that the current ERA “does not define the word ‘sex,'” noting that when Congress ratified the law, “it wasn’t necessary to do so.”
Braceras went on to say that “activists are trying to redefine the term to include ‘gender identity’ so they can force schools to let biological males compete on women’s sports teams, require prisons to let male sex offenders self-identify into women’s facilities and mandate federal funding of puberty blockers for trans-identified teenagers.”
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