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updated: 5/21/2014 9:24 PM

Equal Rights ratification effort advances

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Associated Press

SPRINGFIELD -- A resolution calling for Illinois to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment is advancing in the legislature.

The measure sponsored by Sen. Heather Steans passed out of committee Wednesday and now advances to the Senate floor. The Chicago Democrat says Illinois has been a leader in equal rights but points out the state has "unfinished business."

A movement to add an amendment to the constitution to say rights cannot be deprived based on sex languished in the 1980s when not enough states ratified the measure.

Illinois is one of 15 states that haven't adopted the proposed amendment in the 40 years since it was sent to the states for ratification.

Republicans say the resolution's timing is political and a distraction from the Democrats' record this year.

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