House passes equal rights amendment ballot question

Published 5:44 pm Friday, March 8, 2019

ST. PAUL — Legislation that would let Minnesota voters decide whether to amend the state Constitution to include an equal rights clause has passed the House.

Members of the Democratic-dominated House passed the bill late Thursday. It would put the question on the 2020 ballot, asking voters whether to alter the Constitution to say that people have equal rights regardless of gender.

A much larger hurdle remains for the bill in the Republican-controlled Senate where GOP legislators have raised concerns the amendment could have implications for abortion, and they questioned the use of the term “gender.”

Email newsletter signup

Democratic Rep. Rena Moran said the amendment would help courts deal with gender discrimination in areas such as pay inequity and pregnancy discrimination. Moran said large wage gaps exist across gender and race.