This resolution would eliminate the deadline for states to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) — which is a Constitutional amendment guaranteeing equal rights for all regardless of their sex. It essentially holds that time limits on ratifying constitutional amendments are unnecessary and unconstitutional, so the ratification process that ran from 1972 to 1982 is still valid.
The ERA was passed by Congress in 1972 and provided states a seven-year time limit to ratify the amendment, which was then extended to 1982 after six years had elapsed. Once the 1982 deadline arrived, the ERA had been ratified by 35 states — three short of the requirement. Following its failure to achieve ratification before the 1982 deadline, the ERA was reintroduced in Congress by those who believed the ratification process would have to begin anew.
However, there are some — including the sponsor of this legislation — who believe that to be unnecessary. Time limits on constitutional amendments hadn’t been utilized prior to the 18th Amendment, so ratification time limits are a self-imposed constraint rather than a constitutional requirement. Case in point, the 27th Amendment wasn’t ratified until nearly 203 years after Congress passed it and it sent it to the states!