My brother and I were discussing politics, and catastrophizing, and speculating on how long it takes to pass an amendment to the constitution, say an amendment to make Presidential terms be eight years instead of four, or one to abolish the electoral college.
A question came up — how long does it take to amend the Constitution.
Per Wikipedia, the shortest and longest spans from proposal to ratification are the last two amendments, in the 70s and the 90s.
Amendment 26 sets the voting age at 18. (If I recall, the argument was that if you are old enough to enlist in the army and die for your country you are old enough to vote.) From proposal to ratification? 100 days. The Supreme Court ruled on what the Constitution said about voting age, Congress said, “Well, change the Constitution then,” they proposed the amendment, and the states voted on it in 100 days. Can you imagine?
Amendment 27 ensures that no bounder can 1) be elected to Congress, 2) enact a law to give himself a million dollar salary, 3) rake in millions before possibly being voted out. It was initially to have been part of the Bill of Rights. I suppose the idea was laughable in 1789 when it was proposed, but quite reasonable in 1992 when it passed, 202 years later. (The story of how it was revived and passed should be a movie starring Timothee Chalamet as the student, Daniel Radcliffe as the TA, and Swoosie Kurtz as the Professor.)
Quite a range -100 days or 200 years. And don’t forget, some people argue the Equal Rights Amendment is still in play.