Ohio Attorney General Yost appeals Judge Jenkins indefinite injunction against state’s Heartbeat Law

 By Dave Andrusko

As anticipated, on Wednesday, pro-life Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost filed his “notice of appeal of the Hamilton County Common Pleas Court’s preliminary injunction of the Heartbeat bill.” Hamilton County Judge Christian Jenkins had issued two temporary injunctions of two weeks each blocking S.B.23 , Ohio’s Heartbeat law, before issuing the indefinite injunction against the ban on October 7.

Jenkins issued the injunction from the bench after a daylong hearing. The Associated Press’ Julie Carr Smyth wrote

“In impassioned remarks announcing his decision, Jenkins knocked the state’s arguments that the Ohio Constitution doesn’t ever mention abortion and so doesn’t protect the right to one. He said a right doesn’t have to be named to be protected. 

“This court has no difficulty holding that the Ohio Constitution confers a fundamental right on all of Ohioans to privacy, procreation, bodily integrity and freedom of choice in health care decision-making that encompasses the right to abortion.” 

Judge Jenkins wrote, “Ohio’s constitution does not allow women to be subject to such regulations, and gives no preference to any religion of specific ideological group under ‘rights of conscience,’” Ohio Capital Journal Staff reported.

Jenkins also wrote, “Ohio’s constitution specifically and unambiguously recognized as fundamental the right to liberty … and the right to seek and obtain safety.”

SB 23 was passed in 2019 and signed into law by Gov. Mike DeWine. It had been blocked by the courts until the U.S. Supreme Court’s June 24 historic Dobbs decision overturning Roe v. Wade. Ohio Capital Journal Staff reported

In arguing against the injunctions, Yost’s office claimed the abortion ban had become the status quo in Ohio after it was implemented at Yost’s request following the U.S. Supreme Court’s Dobbs decision overturning national abortion rights.

The Attorney General’s Office pointed to the case not being filed in the Hamilton County for two months after the law was implemented.

The two-month waiting period came as the Ohio Supreme Court had not yet moved forward on a lawsuit the clinics had filed in its court, but had denied an emergency stay of the ban.

Because of the delay, and harm the litigants said Ohioans were suffering, they asked the state supreme court to dismiss the lawsuit, so it could be moved to the current venue in southwest Ohio. The dismissal was granted.

Ohio Right to Life President Michael Gonidakis “said that while they were saddened by the decision, they were not surprised.

The abortion clinics literally forum shopped to get the outcome they wanted. This is a moment in time for the pro-life movement and we are convinced that the Ohio Supreme Court will overturn this ruling. Nowhere in Ohio’s Constitution does a right to an abortion exist.”