The Ohio Legislature has sent two strongly pro-life bills to John Kasich for signature.
The first of these is SB 127 that forbids any abortion after 20 weeks. The current limit in Ohio is 24 weeks. This is not a huge deal in absolute numbers. According to the CDC’s Abortion Surveillance Report there were (sarcasm) *only* (/sarcasm) about 170 abortions in Ohio that would have been prevented by this law. But this change is important for a couple of reason. First, there is a winning trend in states rolling back the gestational period where killing the baby is legal:
These restrictions are largely surviving court challenge because they fall squarely within the rubric laid out by the demented wannabe gynecologist, Harry Blackmun, in Roe vs. Wade.
The second law is more problematic. This is the so-called “Heartbeat Bill“:
Ohio Senators, mostly along party lines, voted Tuesday to ban abortions once a fetal heartbeat is detected, usually about six weeks into a pregnancy.
Republican lawmakers inserted the anti-abortion “heartbeat bill” language at the last minute into a bill revising state child abuse and neglect laws. The bill previously cleared the House, so it will not receive additional hearings.
The House is expected to vote on the bill Tuesday night. If signed by Gov. John Kasich, the legislation would make Ohio’s abortion laws the most restrictive in the nation. But the bill has split abortion foes.
Critics, including Ohio Right to Life, have long said they’re sympathetic to the effort, but assert it would not survive a constitutional challenge.
This kind of bill has been passed in two other states, Arkansas and North Dakota, and in both cases they have been struck down by federal courts. Your views on this latter bill will be largely influence by your opinion on the best tactics to take in fighting abortion. Do you fight everything? Or do you go for incrementalism? I’m inclined toward the first tactic because if you don’t fight you can’t win and as Ghandi said, “First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.” The pro-abort left has gotten over the mocking and laughing part of this and I don’t see a reason to give them a pass on the fighting. That said, I understand the other view and am not going to throw stones at anyone who thinks that is the way to go.
The prognosis is that Kasich will sign the first and not sign the second.*
*During the primary season I started a post on Kasich and abortion expecting him to be much like Tom Ridge in being “I’m personally against abortion but if Kermit Gosnell wants to slaughter patients, who am I to judge, and, by the way we aren’t going to look very hard at him either.” Much to my surprise, the State of Ohio is pretty aggressive in sanctioning abortion facilities that break the rules. At that point my predisposition to dislike Kasich kicked in and I never posted the article.