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Recently, I blogged about the Ohio GOP's spring offensive in their war on women throughout the state. As part of the GOP's two year budget plan, Ohio Republicans proposed defunding Planned Parenthood, redirecting funding to right wing "crisis pregnancy centers", and eliminating abortion clinics in Ohio through a Catch 22 provision in emergency transfer agreements with hospitals. Review it all here.
But remember....this is a war on women's autonomy in the state of Ohio....and war means war, not some half-hearted peckering along the margins. So, Ohio Republicans couldn't let it go at just defunding PP and closing abortion clinics in the state through legalese.
A group of Ohio Republican lawmakers has introduced a bill that would require women seeking abortions to wait at least 48 hours and undergo an ultrasound examination.
Those requirements are among an extensive list of abortion restrictions in House Bill 200, introduced by Rep. Ron Hood of Southeast Ohio and backed by 34 of his GOP colleagues.
Briefly, if passed, HB 200 would....
1) Require doctors to give women a verbal description of the ultrasound, including an audible heartbeat, if available. (The bill notes, however, that a woman can refuse to view ultrasound images or listen to the sounds detected by a fetal heart monitor.)
2) Compel abortion providers to tell patients that fetuses and embryos can feel pain, and that a woman who has an abortion increases her risk of breast cancer.(The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists disagrees)
3) Extend the waiting period for abortions to 48 hours instead of 24.(For no medical reason)
4) Require doctors to tell patients seeking abortions in writing how much money they earn and how much income they would lose by not performing abortions.(WTF)
5) Eliminate "medical necessity" as a reason to waive the waiting period. Medical necessity had been defined as a medical condition that complicates the pregnancy so that it warrants an immediate abortion.
6) Allow a waiver for a "medical emergency," which is redefined in the bill as a condition that would result in the woman's death without an abortion, as opposed to one that presents a serious risk to her life or physical health.
The Cleveland Plain Dealer piece also includes this....
Doctors who do not follow the rules could be charged with a first-degree felony and fined up to $1 million.
Ohio reproductive age women should make no mistake here. Republicans in the state do not want you exercising your legal rights. Abortion is legal in all 50 states. To fight that reality, Republicans in multiple states have passed nullification-style legislation to make access to a legal abortion....or contraception, cancer screenings, etc......much more difficult or impossible. Plotting ways to deny women access to their guaranteed legal rights cannot be characterized any other way than as a "war on women."
None of the restrictions in the Ohio GOP's War on Women bill are necessary medically. Some are harmful. Some are meant to be invasive in order to embarrass and humiliate women. Therefore, what the Ohio GOP is about to pass is a bill which inserts the ideological and, perhaps, theological, views of the Republican Party of Ohio in place of an Ohio woman's legal right to choose. Once again....limited government, it ain't.
I'm embarrassed at how hateful Ohio's ruling Republicans act toward Ohio females. It's a disgrace.
For the record.....and especially for those living in Summit County.....don't forget this....
Reps. Kristina Roegner and Marilyn Slaby, both of Summit County, are the only women in the House to attach their names to the bill. Multiple calls placed to Roegner and Slaby were not returned.
To a male like me, how any woman can vote to deny all women in a state their guaranteed, legal right to choose borders on callous shamelessness. Maybe that's why Roegner and Slaby won't answer their phones.