December 7, 2011
Ohio Heartbeat Bill Highlights Pro-Life Rift
Debate over a pro-life bill currently before the Ohio state legislature highlights the growing rift among pro-life groups, according to The New York Times.
Dubbed the "heartbeat bill," the legislation would ban abortions once a fetal heartbeat is detectable, generally six to eight weeks into the pregnancy. Proponents hope the inevitable legal fight over the bill will be a stepping stone to overturning Roe v. Wade, arguing that the U.S. Supreme Court is ready to reconsider the matter.
The state’s Catholic conference and Ohio Right to Life have voiced opposition to the bill, saying it would potentially prompt a legal setback for pro-life advocacy. If the case eventually reached the Supreme Court, they argue, it would likely result in the affirmation of a woman's right to have an abortion.
Six county chapters of Ohio Right to Life, including the state’s oldest and largest chapter in Cincinnati, have withdrawn their membership because of the organization's opposition to the bill, according to the NYT. National Right to Life has taken a neutral position on the bill.
In June, CT reported on this year's record amount of pro-life legislation in state legislatures across the country.