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Ohio passes twice-vetoed law to ban abortions after fetal heartbeat

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine on Thursday signed a law banning abortion if a fetal heartbeat can be detected. Former Governor John Kasich had twice vetoed similar legislation.

“Government’s role should be to protect life from the beginning to the end,” DeWine said before signing the law, which is set to go into effect in July, according to Cleveland.com.

The Ohio House had voted 56-40 and the Senate 18-13 on Wednesday to send Senate Bill 23 to Gov. DeWine’s desk. State Senator Kristina Roegner was the bill’s primary sponsor.

The new law makes it a fifth-degree felony offense in Ohio to induce or perform an abortion after the detection of a fetal heartbeat, except in a case of medical emergency. In addition, a doctor who performs an abortion could face sanctions and fines by the State Medical Board of Ohio, including the suspension of their medical license.

Women can also sue abortion providers for wrongful death under the new law, and a doctor cannot use unconstitutionality of the law as a defense unless a court rules the law unconstitutional.

“The legislature and Governor DeWine have declared that no longer should the beating hearts of humans too young to be born be violently torn apart by abortion,” said Mark Harrington, president of the national anti-abortion group Created Equal.

“If pro-abortion lobbies present a legal challenge to this Act, we will defend these babies all the way up to the Supreme Court.”

Read more at Catholic News Agency. 

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