Ohio lawmakers just passed one of the most restrictive anti-abortion laws

Ohio lawmakers are some sneaky little rats. In order to get legislation onto Governor John Kasich’s desk before he leaves office, Ohio’s new abortion restriction was tacked onto a bill concerning child abuse. Because why not, right? Anti-choice advocates will do anything. It’s known as the “Heartbeat Bill,” and bans abortion as soon as a heartbeat can be detected, which is usually around six weeks.

Most women don’t even know that they’re pregnant until after six weeks, so there is absolutely no choice involved if this goes through. Legislators passed the bill on Tuesday and it’s sitting on Kasich’s desk right now. He has 10 days to sign or veto it before it becomes law. And get this — if he does nothing, it becomes law anyway. But, he’s probably going to sign it. Kasich has supported sneaky legislation before, leading to half of the abortion clinics in the state closing. He’s signed 16 anti-abortion bills while in office, like ones requiring ultrasounds and requiring abortion clinics to make formal, written agreements with hospitals about emergency care.

Luckily, there’s one little glimmer of hope. If this becomes law, Planned Parenthood Ohio and the American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio have already promised to fight it with lawsuits. In Arkansas and North Dakota, heartbeat bills similar to this one were found unconstitutional, so it might be possible to stop it. It’s going to be a long, expensive fight, though.

But, it’s not just the Heartbeat Bill that Ohio women (and women everywhere) need to watch out for. The Ohio legislature is voting on another abortion law (that oddly competes with this heartbeat bill) that would ban abortion after 20 weeks. Currently, Ohio bans abortion after 24 weeks. The 20-week ban will also likely make it to Kasich’s desk.

That means if he doesn’t sign one, he’ll likely sign the other, being the anti-choice cheerleader that he is. Although, they could both be adopted, since the provision about banning abortion once you hear a heartbeat is tied into a bigger bill concerning child abuse.

Ohio anti-choicers beat their chests while endorsing the legislation. “We in this chamber discuss the opportunities for children all in the context of education, medication and infant mortality. But through our inaction we ensure that some children won’t have the most important opportunity of all — the opportunity to live,” Senator Kris Jordan said on the Senate floor. How noble.

Iris Harvey, president of Planned Parenthood of Greater Ohio, was not amused. “To slip it in at the last minute where there’s no comment and no opportunity for people to really voice their opinion says we can’t trust our legislators,” Harvey told Cleveland. com.

This is not good news, everyone. A ban on abortion after six weeks is radical.