“Didn’t a few states rescind their ratifications?”

  • There is no precedent to count a purported rescission.
  • Article V of the Constitution authorizes states to ratify amendments, but does not give states the power to rescind their ratification.  Ratification is a one-time event.
  • Three amendments to the Constitution were added despite purported rescissions:
    • Fourteenth Amendment: Ohio and New Jersey claimed to rescind their ratifications; their claim had no impact and the Fourteenth Amendment was added to the Constitution.
    • Fifteenth Amendment: New York claimed to rescind but the New York ratification was listed among the ratifying states.
    • Nineteenth Amendment: Tennessee ratified the 19th Amendment and later claimed to rescind the ratification. The National Archivist added the 19th Amendment to the Constitution, including Tennessee’s ratification as the final state ratification required.
  • The precedent is clear, rescissions don’t count.
  • For detailed technical analysis on this issue, check out the many court filings in our FAQ “Virginia v. Ferriero



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