August 18, 2020

On 100th Anniversary of 19th Amendment, ACS Honors Those Who Fought for the Vote

ACS President Russ Feingold Calls on Members, Others to Continue Fight for Equal Rights

Contact: Nancy Rodriguez,

Washington, D.C. American Constitution Society President Russ Feingold released the following statement today to mark the 100th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment, which extended the right to vote to women.

 “American democracy has always been a journey, and though we are far from its end, the ratification of the 19th Amendment was one of the most significant waypoints in that journey. The idea that women could be equal participants in the political system, though not yet fully realized, is a powerful one. To this day it inspires those engaged in the struggle for genuine equality for women and all those denied the full benefits of participation in this as yet most imperfect union.

 Today, as we honor the bravery and tenacity of those who gave so much to earn the right to vote for (some) women, we should also reflect on how far we the living still have to go in that journey. It is amazing and appalling that the Constitution still does not explicitly outlaw discrimination on the basis of sex. The Equal Rights Amendment, the logical and natural follow-on to the 19th Amendment, still has not been formally enshrined in our Constitution. Will we accept this injustice, in contrast to the framers of the 19th Amendment, who tirelessly fought for their rights? Will we shrink from the challenge?

 And will we join the movement to make real the idea of full and equal voting rights for all, as an election approaches in which the current Administration seems determined to set up barriers to participation? The initial, partial down payment on true equality and democracy that the 19th Amendment represented for women was not bestowed from on high. It was won through struggle, in legislatures, courtrooms, and in the streets.

 I call on the members of the American Constitution Society, and all those who believe in the democratic promise of the Constitution, to join in this struggle.”



ACS believes that the Constitution is “of the people, by the people, and for the people.” We interpret the Constitution based on its text and against the backdrop of history and lived experience. Through a diverse nationwide network of progressive lawyers, law students, judges, scholars, and many others, we work to uphold the Constitution in the 21st Century by ensuring that law is a force for protecting our democracy and the public interest and for improving people’s lives. For more information, visit us at or on Twitter @acslaw.