Yesterday, the Ohio Senate passed the controversial “Heartbeat Bill” which would restrict abortions once a heartbeat is detectable which can occur as early as 6 weeks.
Today, Republican lawmakers have added amendments to the legislation on its way to Gov. John Kasich that abortions would be outright banned after 20 weeks.
This in conjunction with the aforementioned “Heartbeat Bill” would pave the way for Ohio to become one of the most restrictive states in the U.S. for woman’s constitutional rights to have access to the services in question.
Kasich, an opponent of the pro-choice movement, even has his own concerns with the “Heartbeat Bill”—previously pondering whether such legislation would be constitutional.
All other similar legislation in the United States has been struck down in the Supreme Court for that very reason.
According to NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio this legislation would block access to abortion before most women even know they’re pregnant.
Under the 1973 Supreme Court Ruling of Roe V. Wade, states were left to decide when abortions would no longer be an option for women. This decision was to be determined by a broad term called “viability”—or the point at which a fetus has a reasonable chance to survive on its own (with artificial aid) outside the womb.
There is no legal definition of viability which but studies show that it sits around 23 to 27 weeks. At 24 months, a fetus has a 50% survival chance if removed from the womb.
The 20 week stipulation the GOP is proposing, would put pregnancies at 4.5 months.