Beyond Political Ploys: Ohio is Systematically Harming Women

OhiowelcomesyouOhio lawmakers are playing politics with women’s health.  Last week, the Ohio legislature rushed through two last-minute abortion bans.  First, they passed an extreme bill that would have effectively banned all abortions in the state. Then, they quietly passed another dangerous and unconstitutional ban on later abortions. The public, though, refused to be quiet and expressed their outrage.
On Tuesday, Governor Kasich tried to pull a bait and switch by vetoing the six-week ban while still signing the 20-week ban.  But Ohioans aren’t fooled by Governor Kasich’s attempt to appear reasonable. They know this law is about denying Ohio women access to safe, legal abortion services.
Here are eight things you need to know about the bill Governor Kasich just signed:

  1. This ban takes decision-making away from women and gives it to politicians. Every woman should be able to make her own decisions about her health, family, and future. But this ban interferes in a woman’s decision-making.
  2. The law criminalizes physicians for providing needed health care.  Doctors could face up to a year and a half in prison for performing an abortion.
  3. The ban is blatantly unconstitutional.Every time a ban like this has been challenged, it has been blocked by courts.
  4. The public does not support this type of government interference with women’s decisions. When given context to understand the real-world impact these laws would have, a majority of voters oppose 20-week bans.
  5. The medical community does not support this type of restriction.Both the Ohio State Medical Association and the American Congress of Obstetricians urged Governor Kasich to veto this bill.
  6. This bill is part of a strategy to attack the legal right to abortion. As Ohio Right to Life President Michael Gonidakis said: “Our ultimate goal is to overturn Roe v. Wade and we feel the 20-week ban is the best (legal) strategy.”
  7. Ohio politicians are constantly seeking ways to restrict abortion, leaving women in their state without necessary health care. This is yet another restriction in a state that has already sought to decimate women’s right to access safe, legal abortion.  Since 2011, Ohio politicians have enacted 18 restrictions in order to limit reproductive health care, forcing more than half of the clinics in Ohio to close.
  8. The election results encouraged politicians to pass this bill.The politicians who approved the measure said the outcome of the election emboldened them to pass these bills.  But the Constitution doesn’t change just because the president does, and this bill is unconstitutional.

This ban ignores the health, well-being, and constitutional rights of Ohioans, and threatens the right to abortion across the nation.   The public isn’t falling for Ohio’s bait and switch ploys – and the message is clear, women are fed up with politicians trying to legislate their personal health decisions.