WYSO

ACLU Sues Over Ohio's "Heartbeat Bill" Six-Week Abortion Ban

23 hours ago
Originally published on May 15, 2019 6:14 pm

More than a month after Gov. Mike DeWine signed one of the most restrictive abortion bans in the country, a lawsuit has been filed in federal court to stop it from taking effect in July. It bans abortion as early as six weeks into a pregnancy.

The bill bans abortion after a fetal heartbeat can be detected, often before a woman would even know she was pregnant. Jessie Hill, an attorney working with the ACLU, says the so-called “heartbeat bill” is blatantly unconstitutional.

“The law is very clear and the science that fetuses are not viable at six weeks of pregnancy and states cannot ban abortions before viability.”

Backers of the heartbeat bill expected the court challenge over the new law and hope the case will end up with the U.S. Supreme Court.

They think the new conservative justices could use the law to overturn Roe vs Wade.

This lawsuit is the latest in a long list of hurdles for the Heartbeat Bill. Lawmakers fought for the bill's passage since 2011 and passed it through the legislature twice. Former Gov. John Kasich, also a Republican, vetoed the measure twice, most recently last year. He had said it was clearly unconstitutional. But DeWine had promised to sign the bill during his campaign for Governor. And last month, he kept his word, signing the bill into law.

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