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Health and Medicine

Ohio abortion ban could be most restrictive
Backer of "heart-beat bill" acknowledges it's heading for a court challenge

Karen Kasler

Ohio could have the most restrictive law on abortion in the nation, if the so-called “Heartbeat Bill” passes. The measure would ban abortion after the first detectable fetal heartbeat, which can be as early as five weeks after conception. Sponsoring Rep. Lynn Wachtmann (watch-man) of Napoleon says other states will be watching the outcome of this bill, which could test the limits of nearly 40 years of case law on abortion.


Wachtmann acknowledges a likely court challenge

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"It absolutely will be a landmark case, by virtue that we are first to the gate to pass this type of legislation," says Lynn Wachtmann. "We don’t want to do things to set up for failure, but we know the courts will be the final judge.” 

Ohio Right to Life is on record as opposing the bill, saying it doesn’t stand a chance of being upheld as constitutional. It’s instead pushing a bill that would ban abortions after 20 weeks – a point at which the antiabortion group says a fetus can live outside the body. 

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