Ohio Senate Passes Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act

Legislation to Protect Pain-Capable Babies from Abortion in Ohio

feelpainCOLUMBUS, Ohio—On Wednesday the Ohio Senate passed Ohio Right to Life’s premier legislation for 2015, the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act (S.B. 127), 23-9. This legislation prohibits abortions in Ohio at the point at which pre-born babies can feel pain, which starts no later than 20 weeks gestation. The legislation is sponsored by Senators Peggy Lehner (R-Kettering) and Jay Hottinger (R-Newark). Between the House and Senate, thirty-three legislators are co-sponsors of the legislation.

“With the Ohio Senate, we are leading Ohio down a historic path that is redefining the abortion debate in America,” said Stephanie Ranade Krider, executive director of Ohio Right to Life. “With this momentous vote, the Ohio Senate just approved legislation that will help Ohio catch up to the international community’s restrictions on abortion. Ohio Right to Life is grateful to Senate President Keith Faber, Chairwoman Shannon Jones, and bill sponsors Peggy Lehner and Jay Hottinger for their tremendous pro-life leadership on this legislation.”

In November 2014, The Quinnipiac University Poll found that 60% of Americans would support prohibiting abortion after 20 weeks, while only 33% opposed such legislation. Women voters strongly support such a law by 59-35%, while independent voters supported it by 56-36%.

Over the last month, Ohio Right to Life has collaborated with medical experts and pro-life advocates to present proponent testimony on its legislation. Before today’s vote, Denise Leipold, executive director of Right to Life of Northeast Ohio, and Judy Bruns, past president of Mercer County Right to Life and board trustee of Teachers Saving Children, Inc., testified in favor of the bill.

“Ohio is poised to make a real difference in how we promote and protect the dignity of every human life in our state,” said Krider. “Ohio Right to Life is eager to continue work on this critical legislation and future legislation until every unborn baby is spared the pain and horror of being dismembered in the womb.”

Last month, the U.S. House of Representatives passed similar legislation under Speaker John Boehner (R-OH). This month, the legislation was introduced in the U.S. Senate, with U.S. Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) signing on as a co-sponsor.