Wisconsin Equality of Sexes Amendment, Question 2 (April 1973)

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The Wisconsin Equality of Sexes Amendment was a legislatively-referred constitutional amendment on the April 3, 1973 ballot in Wisconsin, where it was defeated.

This amendment sought to modify Article I, Section 25 of the Wisconsin Constitution to prohibit the denial or abridgement of rights and protections under the law on the basis of sex.[1]

Election results

Question 2
ResultVotesPercentage
Defeatedd No520,93653.81%
Yes 447,240 46.19%

Official results via: The Wisconsin Blue Book 1973

Text of measure

The language that appeared on the ballot:

Shall section 25 of article I of the constitution be created to prohibit the denial or abridgement of rights and protections under the law on the basis of sex? (Note-Wisconsin statutes presently contain a number of provisions which treat persons differently, under the same or similar circumstances, on the basis of differences in sex. A 'yes' vote on this amendment would require a revision of many such provisions and would provide a constitutional foundation under Wisconsin law for requiring that a person's sex be excluded as a valid consideration in determining legal rights, privileges and immunities as well as legal duties and responsibilities.)"[1]

Note: The note above in the ballot text did not necessarily appear on the ballot.[2]

Constitutional changes

(Article I) Section 25. Equality of rights or equal protection under the law shall not be denied or abridged on the basis of sex.[1]

Support

Supporters argued the amendment would eliminate discriminatory laws against women, particularly in regards to employment.[3]

Opposition

Opposition argued that natural physical differences between the sexes made equality impossible, and that the amendment could negatively affect protective measures for woman.[3]

Path to the ballot

  • First Legislative Approval: AJR 140 & JR 44 (1971)
  • Second Legislative Approval: AJR 21 & JR 5 (1973)[4]

See also

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References