Explain the Factors Which Make It Difficult to Amend the Us Constitution

740 WordsDec 26, 20123 Pages
Q. Explain the factors which make it difficult to amend the US Constitution (15 marks) To amend the US Constitution, a bill has to go through a two-stage process: proposal and ratification. The proposal stage has to have two thirds majority in both the House of Representatives and the Senate. Every successful amendment has started this way and even the failed ones. A proposal can also be made by a Constitutional convention, which is a one-off body which is put together for a specific purpose, and this is called by Congress on petition by two thirds of the states. This method has never been used. The problem with this proposal method is that the Constitution doesn’t state how it should be done and there is no mechanism. There are,…show more content…
However, there are implications for ratification. Thirty-eight states are needed for ratification. The problem with this is that there are huge variations in political culture of states-the South is known to be Conservative, North East or West Coast is known to be liberal/Cosmopolitan, North is known to be urban and industrial and the Midwest is known to be rural and agricultural. Therefore, with the differences in political culture, there are demands for a nationwide consensus which can prove difficult. An example of this was the Equal Rights Act which failed to pass the ratification stage as it was 3 states shy of the 38 needed to pass the ratification stage. It was argued that there was already the 14th Amendment which states the Equal Opportunities Act. But the Equal Rights Act failed because it ran out of time- there was a 7 year time limit and it took 10 years. The amendment process takes place contemporaneously, meaning it is based on issues happening at the moment. There was also an economic factor which was said to prevent this Act from passing. Big businesses would have had to pay out more to ensure both male and females received equal pay. Often these corporate companies would have connections to politicians themselves, to oppose the Act because the businesses had access to them and pressure groups did not. The pressure
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