In Steve Hochstadt’s recent opinion article, he discusses the Equal Rights Amendment and asks the question: “Why did [C.D.] Davidsmeyer decide to vote no?”
I find it amusing that he could have found out that answer by simply calling me.
While I may not agree with him on many things, I am not afraid to have a conversation with an individual with whom I disagree.
Instead of asking me, he would rather make up a reason in his own mind.
It is not because I wasn’t born during the inequality of the 1960s and prior. It is not because I’m a white male. It’s not because I’m a Republican. And it’s most certainly not because I believe in inequality.
Perhaps Mr. Hochstadt would like to look back into the history of the ERA and the wording that originated in the 1920s. Perhaps he would like to talk about the ulterior motive behind the ERA.
I am pro-life and I am unashamed of that. I don’t rub it in people’s faces and it’s not the only issue that I believe in, but it’s important to me to protect innocent lives.
The ERA was used in the following ways to promote elective abortion:
• In 1998, the New Mexico Supreme Court ruled that the ERA requires the state to pay for all abortions for low-income women.
• The ACLU filed briefs in abortion cases in Hawaii, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania and Connecticut arguing that the ERA requires tax funding for elective abortions because it is classified as a medical procedure.
• The Connecticut Superior Court ruled on April 19, 1986, that the state ERA requires abortion funding.
• And, when Congressman James Sensenbrenner filed an amendment to the ERA to ensure that the ERA was only about equal rights and not about abortion, it was rejected by ERA advocates, proving their ulterior motives.
The examples above tell me that the ERA is not about equal rights, but rather a way to push another agenda.
I am for equal rights for women and I would encourage Congress to pursue an amendment to the U.S. Constitution like the one in Illinois that already constitutionally protects women here.
On another note, Hochstadt decided to refer to me as a follower on the state employee back pay issue. I would encourage him to do some “investigative journalism” or a little “research” to see that on Feb. 11, 2014, I filed HB5451 in the 98th General Assembly to pay the back pay. On May 27-28, I decided to focus on the Democrat version of the bill, HB3764. In those two days, I worked to add another 25 sponsors to the Democrats’ back pay bill, getting it up to 70 in an attempt to force the speaker’s hand. Even with one shy of a super-majority, Madigan would not call the bill.
Then, on Feb. 19, 2015, I filed HB2703 in the 98th General Assembly to pay the back pay. On April 5, 2016, I joined members of the other party as a chief co-sponsor of HB6425, a bi-partisan attempt to pay the back pay. On Jan. 26, 2017, I again filed a bill, HB754, to pay the back pay. On March 1, I joined in support of another bill to pay the back pay — and this time it passed.
Sometimes years of behind-the-scenes work and public support pay off. While it wasn’t my name at the top of the bill, I worked with the sponsor to ensure that the same bill that I filed back in 2014 was finally allowed a chance to be voted on and the state would finally pay the oldest bill held by the state of Illinois.
In the future, false information could be stopped with a simple phone call and conversation.
C.D. Davidsmeyer of Jacksonville is a member of the Illinois House of Representatives.