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Having worked your way through the language of the proposed abortion amendment in Ohio, what does it really say, and what would be its real-world effect?

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Should the rhetorical fog dissipate, the initiative on the ballot this November would, in essence, enshrine unlimited abortion as part of the Ohio Constitution.

“Issue 1” would have raised the threshold to change the Ohio state constitution from a simple majority vote to a vote of 60%. The initiative was defeated with 57% of the vote against it and 43% in favor. Approximately 1.7 million people voted against the initiative, while 1.3 million voted in favor.

The state press has published numerous articles supporting the amendment, while articles opposing the amendment have been relatively scarce.

One of the most compelling arguments against the proposed abortion amendment appeared today in the Cincinnati Enquirer under the headline, “Proposed abortion amendment more extreme than Roe v. Wade.”

The article, written by Ken Craycraft, begins with a clear and forceful assertion: “Supporters of the proposed ballot initiative to establish the so-called right to abortion in the Ohio Constitution rely on obfuscation, distortion, and falsification to attempt to scare Ohioans into voting ‘yes’ for a constitutional amendment that is more extreme than Roe v. Wade.” It then proceeds to demonstrate the extent of this distortion, concluding with the assertion that the proposed constitutional amendment is “an exercise in the most extreme abortion advocacy imaginable.” It is my hope that Ohioans will be sufficiently astute to recognize the ruse.

The following is a summary of a thought-provoking piece that is highly recommended for its comprehensive analysis.

* The amendment would prevent Ohioans, through their elected representatives, from passing any meaningful regulation of abortion throughout the entire nine months of pregnancy, up to the date of birth.

However, the amendment does not explicitly prohibit abortion after viability. Craycraft asserts that this is a meaningless provision, as the very next sentence states that abortion may not be prohibited after viability “if in the professional judgment” of the woman’s physician, the abortion is “necessary” to protect the woman’s “life or health.”

However, as he notes, “nearly 50 years of abortion law under Roe v. Wade demonstrated what that language means in practice.” He goes on to say that the term “health” is not even a “pretend limit.” He further states that the purpose of the caveat “life or health” of the mother is to give cover for abortion on demand throughout all nine months of gestation, without exception.

Secondly, the proposed amendment would remove parents from the decision-making process regarding their minor child’s use of hormonal contraception or abortion. It is important to note that this does not deprive parents of the right to grant permission; rather, it removes their rights to be consulted or informed.
Erasing parental involvement is much easier if they are not even aware of their child’s contemplation of an abortion.


Third, the drafters of the amendment believe that Ohioans are incapable of critical thinking. The amendment is intentionally designed to address issues that do not and will never exist in Ohio law. Its purpose is to frighten people into supporting it. It states that Ohio may not interfere with “every individual’s” decision about “contraception,” “fertility treatment,” and “miscarriage care.” However, no legislation in Ohio, whether proposed, drafted, or enacted, has ever attempted to regulate these matters. Furthermore, it is unlikely that any governor would sign a bill that did so.

It is to be hoped that the good citizens of Ohio will be able to discern the obfuscation, distortion and falsification that has been employed in this matter and will vote accordingly in the forthcoming election.


Chelsea Garcia is a political writer with a special interest in international relations and social issues. Events surrounding the war in Ukraine and the war in Israel are a major focus for political journalists. But as a former local reporter, she is also interested in national politics.

Chelsea Garcia studied media, communication and political science in Texas, USA, and learned the journalistic trade during an internship at a daily newspaper. In addition to her political writing, she is pursuing a master's degree in multimedia and writing at Texas.

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