Democrats should start the process of amending the Constitution

Whack-a-Mole laid out some of the court cases that are in danger of being overturned quite nicely in the thread about Roe vs. Wade.

This gave me the idea that Democrats should start the process of amending the Constitution to do an end round on this activist SCOTUS. I propose the following amendments, to address each of the court cases mentioned.

28th amendment.
The rights of citizens of the United States to marriage shall not be abridged based on race.

29th amendment.
The rights of citizens of the United States to marriage shall not be abridged based on sexual orientation.

30th amendment.
The rights of citizens of the United States to marriage shall not be abridged based on gender identity.

31st amendment.
There shall be no laws passed limiting consenting adults from engaging in any sexual acts of their preference in private.

32nd amendment.
Right to contraception. The exact wording would probably be a little trickier due to this area involving medications that are approved by the FDA and that are prescribed by medical providers. Exact wording to be determined by those better than me at wordsmithing.

33rd amendment.
Right to abortion. Same as above regarding the wording.

It’s time to get the process going. I like the idea of having them separate rather than lumping them together to avoid objections from legislators who claim to oppose only certain parts of the proposals. When Republican representatives and senators object (and I’m sure they will to some or all of these), that will be a perfect way to campaign against them. At the very least they should all be brought up for a vote in the House and Senate, and challengers to incumbent Democrats should be asked where they stand on all to these individually.

Sure. Why not? But there’s an arguably more fundamental right you’ve forgotten.

The Equal Rights Amendment, passed by your country’s Congress back in 1978, but never ratified by the required number of states and thus not a part of your constitution begins: “Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.”

In other words, the human and civil rights guaranteed by the United States Constitution do not, as of 2022, explicitly include the right to equality of men and women. Now ruminate on that. Let that sink in.

Since the deadline to ratify the ERA expired in 1979, there have been numerous chances to re-adopt and ratify this rule and put it in the Constitution, yet there has not been enough impetus to do so. How about starting with this? A guarantee of equality of the sexes is a staple of constitutional rights instruments in the free world. It’s old hat. Nothing revolutionary about it anymore. And yet USA, which loves to boast about all the freedom and democracy its citizens enjoy, has not yet made it explicit in its constitution. Really, it’s something to think about.

Obviously the number one priority should be direct popular election of the President (Clinton would have beaten Trump…)

But amending the Constitution is vastly more difficult than winning the House, Senate and Presidency simultaneously.

Take a look at all the efforts to get pro-life legislation through Congress, including the more than half-dozen attempts to get a Human Life Amendment into the Constitution. Most of them either died in committee or strangled by fillibuster. Why do you think the pro-choice side would be any more successful?

The mechanism for implementing an amendment is such a high bar, effectively requiring the support of both 2/3rds of both chambers of Congress, as well as 3/4 of the states, that I have a hard time seeing any amendment which has any level of controversy being implemented in our current political environment.

The last time that the U.S. had an amendment pass, which had any real controversy behind it, was in 1967 (the 24th, which prohibits poll taxes). In the past 50 years, we’ve only added one amendment, the 27th, which was very narrow in scope (affecting implementation of pay raises for Congress) – and that one was hanging around for 202 years before it was finally passed.

Dozens of amendments to the Constitution are introduced in Congress every session. I haven’t done the research, but there are likely already amendments introduced on some of the topics you name.

So the process has been started, it’s just an incredible lift beyond that first step.

I realize that getting the amendments passed would be difficult. The idea is to get all the members of Congress on record as to what they support and what they oppose. Then rather than it being something covered by C-SPAN 2 at 3 AM on a Thursday morning and then forgotten about, make them into major issues for the various campaigns.

I would predict that support of all of the amendments which you propose would fall almost entirely along party lines, and would make minimal differences in election outcomes for those senators and representatives.

Those amendments would likely be opposed by most conservative voters, and for their elected representatives to oppose them would be considered to be a feature, not a bug.

We will never see another amendment in our lifetime. The hurdle of getting approved by 3/4 of the states is now impossible, given that there are just too many puny states with power grossly disproportionate to their population.

In too many states members of Congress will happily and publicly oppose any/all of the amendments proposed by the OP, knowing that doing so will only bolster their appeal by the right wing whackjobs that got them their positions in the first place. Public decency, shame and avoidance of hypocrisy are not terms this decade’s Republicans recognize.

The House already voted last year to codify abortion rights into federal law. It passed that chamber on party lines. Members are already on record. Making it a vote on a Constitutional amendment won’t fundamentally change anything.

Right. The idea is to motivate those on the left who sometimes stay home out of apathy, and as a reminder to those in the middle that there are far more important issues at stake than whether or not inflation or gas prices are up a little this year.

The biggest amendment we need is to amend the process of making an amendment. If you told the founding fathers that we had as few amendments as we do in 2020, they’d be dumbfounded.

I was about to make that point. Note that there hasn’t been a new amendment to the Constitution in over half a century (I’m not counting the XXVIIth, since it’s such an oddball and is very specialized).

Actually if they could get the Senate to pass that bill, it would be a HUGE win, because that would essentially reset the whole shebang- Roe v. Wade would be moot, and the whole legal challenge approach would have to start again, except this time trying to figure out how it’s not constitutional.

Which would almost certainly end up a question of state’s rights, but I think that’s a higher hurdle than the right-to-privacy argument in Roe.

Why not just lump all those amendments into one? Would be a lot easier to pass than individually separating them all. Just have one big amendment that lumps gender identity, sexual orientation, abortion, everything, into one big paragraph.

Per the OP:

The experience in Canada and Australia is that it is easier to pass very specific amendments than a big package. People who are opposed to one item in the big package will vote against the entire package on that basis. To pass, you need general support for all the components, which is hard to get.

I couldn’t think of a better way to sink it than to make sure that there was something in it for every Republican to hate, giving them all the excuse to say, “I might have supported some of those, but the others make it a no go.”.

You could combine several of those into one amendment about the right of any two people to marry.

And the other thing that’s needed is an amendment guaranteeing the right to privacy.