Ohio joins Texas in middle of abortion spotlight
July 1st, 2013
09:00 AM ET
1 year ago

Ohio joins Texas in middle of abortion spotlight

(CNN) – Ohio is joining Texas as one of the latest battlegrounds in the divisive fight over abortion.

Ohio's Republican governor, John Kasich, signed into law Sunday night the state's budget, which includes some controversial abortion provisions.

Those measures will require ultrasounds for anyone seeking an abortion and limit abortion clinics from transferring patients to public hospitals. If they need more care after a procedure, patients will now have to seek out a private hospital. The budget will also make it more difficult for family planning groups in the Buckeye State to obtain funding for preventive care. And it puts Planned Parenthood behind clinics that don't provide abortions, when it comes to obtaining state funding.

The provisions are part of an overall $62 billion budget, which includes a $2.7 billion tax cut and $1.5 billion for education. Kasich vetoed 22 line-items in the budget, but left the abortion provisions, which were passed Thursday by the Republican-controlled state legislature.

Kasich, who is up for re-election next year, did not take questions from reporters Sunday night after signing the budget.

No Democrats in the state legislature voted for the measures, and the party was quick to spotlight the governor's move.

"This is why Mitt Romney lost in 2012" was the headline from an email from Elisabeth Smith, a senior adviser and spokeswoman for the Democratic Governors Association.

"Governor John Kasich, surrounded by a smiling group of Republican male legislators, just signed a bill in Ohio that will defund Planned Parenthood and force women seeking abortions to get medically unnecessary ultrasounds. These positions are controversial, unpopular, and well out of the mainstream in any state, let alone Ohio," Smith said in her email to reporters.

There was a similar message from the Democratic National Committee.

"Kasich's legislation is just the latest example of Republicans' extreme agenda on women's health- an agenda that aims to systematically prevent personal medical decisions from remaining between a woman and her doctor," said an email from the DNC.

Ohio is a crucial battleground state in presidential politics. It was the state that put President George W. Bush over the top in his 2004 re-election, but was won by President Barack Obama in his 2008 and 2012 election victories.

Ohio Right to Life termed the passage of the abortion measures as "historic."

"Ohio Right to Life applauds Governor Kasich and the vast pro-life majorities in the House and Senate," said Mike Gonidakis, the group's president. "It took great compassion and courage for our Governor and pro-life legislature to stand up to the abortion industry that blatantly pressured them."

"The budget passed by the Ohio state legislature and signed by Governor Kasich last night reflects the pro-life priorities of Ohioans," agreed Marjorie Dannenfelser, President of the Susan B. Anthony List, a group "dedicated to electing candidate and pursuing polices that will reduce and ultimately end abortion."

Kasich signed the abortion measures one day before the Texas state legislature was set to meet in a special session called by Gov. Rick Perry. The agenda for the special session includes a controversial measure that would prohibit most abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy. The bill was sidelined last week following a filibuster by a Democratic state senator that captured national attention.


Filed under: Abortion • John Kasich • Ohio • Texas
soundoff (13 Responses)
  1. ja

    these so-called antiabortionist don't give two shakes about other than their own agendas, why aren't they passing immigration reform, ridding our cities of ghettos

    July 1, 2013 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  2. Data Driven

    "Those measures will require ultrasounds for anyone seeking an abortion and limit abortion clinics from transferring patients to public hospitals. If they need more care after a procedure, patients will now have to seek out a private hospital."

    I would like to hear conservatives defend the above quote. Forcing women to be transferred to "private" hospitals? Really? REALLY?

    Republican Overreach, 2013! Result? Republican Losses, 2014!

    July 1, 2013 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  3. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA -aka- Take Back The House -aka- No Redemption Votes

    Passing legislation ion the darkness of night like a COWARD!!! The War on Women continues.

    July 1, 2013 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  4. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA -aka- Take Back The House -aka- No Redemption Votes

    This is BIG GOVERNMENT!!! I thought republicans were against BIG GOVERNMENT. IOKIYAR

    July 1, 2013 09:15 am at 9:15 am |
  5. jboh

    Sounds like the "good old days" when women were left to bleed to death outside hospitals after backstreet abortions. What did anyone expect from Gov.Lehman Brothers.

    July 1, 2013 09:19 am at 9:19 am |
  6. ge

    brought to you by the private health care system-its not about abortion its about greed

    July 1, 2013 09:27 am at 9:27 am |
  7. Tony

    We need to get rid of these home grown talibans in 2014 we cannot have idiots running our state or country.

    July 1, 2013 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  8. The Real Tom Paine

    So much for the "laser-like focus" on jobs. The GOP has managed to shoot itself in the foot with this one. No amount of damage control will help them on the so-called "party of small government" demanding that women undergo additional procedures largely at their own expense to satisfy the Right's morbid curiosity about people's sex lives. Kasich will take what had been a steady increase in his job approval and shoot it into the crapper with this ill-considered move. I'm sure he has stock in tthe companies performing these state-mandated ultrasounds, as well. Anything for a buck for Buckeye Johnny,

    July 1, 2013 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  9. ST

    Why are these people who are always singing: "we want small gov. we want the gov. not to intefere in our lives" and yet they are working so hard to do the opposite? Can you please, disappear and let everyone live the life they think suit them well?

    July 1, 2013 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  10. Rick McDaniel

    When you abuse the right of abortion, in the manner that the Dem socialists have.........then you have to expect backlash.

    July 1, 2013 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  11. Marty, FL

    GOP politicians hypocritically harp on so-called "smaller government" nonsense & then push their BIG government intrusions against women's privacy with her own doctor, forcing women into unnecessary procedures. Enough.

    2014 vote it out.

    July 1, 2013 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  12. Gurgyl

    Quit this nasty religion incur.....

    July 1, 2013 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  13. Name

    "four dead in Ohio ... how many more?" GOP – shame on you!

    July 1, 2013 10:26 am at 10:26 am |