Last night, Ohio’s Governor John Kasich signed a host of restrictions on abortion into law, which went into effect today. Like other Republicans before him, Governor Kasich placed these legal restrictions on women’s reproductive rights flanked by a bunch of old, white men.
The restrictions, which were attached to the state budget, require a woman seeking abortion to undergo an ultrasound; cut off funding to family planning services at Planned Parenthood and other clinics; provides funding for so-called “crisis pregnancy centers” that are often run by religious groups; and penalize rape crisis clinics for counseling on abortion as an option after sexual assault. Abortion providers are also required to tell women before an abortion about different stages of fetal development and disperse information about adoption. Yet another restriction will not allow women’s reproductive health centers to transfer women to public hospitals in the case of a crisis. Several women’s reproductive health centers in Ohio will be forced to close due to all these restrictions.
In a statement, Cecile Richards of Planned Parenthood Federation of America chastised Governor Kasich. “Like Governor Perry in Texas, politicians in Ohio knew they couldn’t pass these unpopular measures if they played by the rules — that’s why they tried to bury these provisions in the pages of a must-pass state budget,” she said in a statement.
These restrictions in Ohio come one week after similar attacks on reproductive rights were made in the Texas state legislature. Faced with a bill that would have greatly reduced women’s access to abortion in TX by closing 37 clinics, State Senator Wendy Davis successfully filibustered the bill for 13 hours last Tuesday. Despite her successful filibuster, TX Governor Rick Perry announced the state legislature will hold a special session today with the intention of passing the abortion restrictions.
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