Ohio Republicans introduce abortion ban bill similar to Texas law

The proposed legislation is even more restrictive than the Texas abortion ban

Updated: November 4, 2021 - 8:10am

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Ohio House Republicans have introduced legislation to ban all abortions in the state, going even a step further than the recent Texas bill that is now the most restrictive in the nation.

House Bill 480 is co-sponsored by over half of Ohio House GOP conference. Similar to the Texas law, Ohio's proposal would allow "any person" to file a civil lawsuit seeking $10,000 or more against anyone in the state who performs an abortion or "knowingly engages in conduct that aids or abets the performance or inducement of an abortion," which includes insurance paying for one.

The bill is titled 2363 Act, which refers to the average daily number of abortions performed in the United States in 2017. 

"The 2363 Act is about protecting our fundamental, constitutional right to be born and live. Abortion kills children, scars families, and harms women. We can and must do better," said state GOP Rep. Jena Powell.

While the Texas law bans abortions performed following the six-week mark of a pregnancy, HB480 bans any abortion from being performed in Ohio. It also includes no exceptions for rape or incest, though it does bar lawsuits from being brought against abortion patients by anyone who impregnated them through rape or other sexual violence.

The law carves out a rule that defendants in court would not be able to argue, as their legal defense, that they were unaware of the law or that they believe it to be unconstitutional. 

The bill's primary co-sponsor is 26-year-old state GOP Rep. Thomas Hall, who noted in a statement that he and Powell – the two youngest members of the Ohio House – "are part of the generation that will end abortion in Ohio and across America."

The bill is sponsored by 33 other state House Republicans, whose conference holds a 64-35 majority in the chamber.

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