COLUMBUS, Ohio — The Ohio House of Representatives voted on Thursday in favor of a bill that would ban abortion when a heartbeat is detected, usually around six weeks gestation. The measure passed the legislature two years ago, but was vetoed by Republican Gov. John Kasich.
“This bill basically says if there is a heartbeat, you cannot abort. If there is a heartbeat, there is life. … There is no debating that,” Rep. Ron Hood, R-Ashville, told the Dayton Daily News. “We can finally save these babies from being slaughtered before they’re even born.”
The bill advanced mostly along party lines 60-35 and now moves on to the Senate for deliberation.
“A person who intends to perform or induce an abortion on a pregnant woman shall determine whether there is a detectable fetal heartbeat of the unborn human individual the pregnant woman is carrying,” House Bill 258 reads in part. “The person who performs the examination for the presence of a fetal heartbeat shall give the pregnant woman the option to view or hear the fetal heartbeat.”
Fetal development experts state that an infant’s heart begins beating just 20-25 days after conception, and machines can detect the heartbeat 2-3 weeks later.
A number of speeches from both sides of the issue were delivered on the House floor prior to the vote.
According to the Dayton Daily News, Rep. Catherine Ingram, D-Cincinnati, argued that the decision to abort is up to the woman, and that God will judge her in the afterlife.
“It’s often the case that a woman doesn’t even know she’s pregnant until after six weeks,” also remarked Rep. Nickie Antonio, D-Lakewood. “This is especially true for women who are emotionally traumatized by rape.”
“Motherhood isn’t easy, but it’s necessary. It’s the reason every one of us are here today. It’s the reason every one of us have a living, beating heart,” declared Rep. Christina Hagan, R-Alliance, who held her twin infants in a sling wrap as she spoke.
She said, in regard to rape, that children should not be punished for the “act of the father.”
“Today, let us stand up for the most innocent among us: the unborn,” urged Rep. Kristina Roegner, R-Hudson, who told those gathered that abortion is murder.
As previously reported, Ohio lawmakers passed a heartbeat bill in 2016, but Gov. Kasich vetoed it, concluding that the state would likely lose if sued over the matter and he didn’t want taxpayer money going to pay the legal fees of abortion “rights” groups.
“The State of Ohio will be the losing party in that lawsuit and, as the losing party, the State of Ohio will be forced to pay hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars to cover the legal fees for the pro-choice activists’ lawyers,” he outlined. “Furthermore, such a defeat invites additional challenges to Ohio’s strong legal protections for unborn life. Therefore, this veto is in the public interest.”
Governor-elect Mike DeWine, who takes office in January, has expressed support for the legislation.
Psalm 127:3-5 reads, “Lo, children are an heritage of the Lord, and the fruit of the womb is His reward. As arrows are in the hand of a mighty man, so are children of the youth. Happy is the man that hath his quiver full of them …”
In Proverbs 6, the Scriptures also state that the Lord hates “hands that shed innocent blood.”