Ohio lawmakers push suing men for pregnancy, ‘Life Day’ after Roe ruling

"The father shares equal responsibility for the pregnancy and it is only right that he pays equally for it," said Sen. Tina Maharath
Image
Abortion activist yelling, May 3, 2022, Washington, D.C.
Abortion activist yelling, May 3, 2022, Washington, D.C.
Win McNamee/Getty Images

One Ohio senator wants women to be able to sue men for causing unintended pregnancy, while another wants the state to declare June 24 “Life Day,” all coming in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision that overturned Roe v. Wade and the state’s now six-week ban on abortion.

Sen. Tina Maharath, D-Canal Winchester, used both the Supreme Court decision and the state’s new ban as her push to introduce Senate Bill 262 that would allow a civil action against any person causing an unintended pregnancy or any person aiding or abetting someone to have caused an unintended pregnancy.

“Many women and girls in Ohio do not have the resources to either travel or afford having a baby. The average cost of giving birth in our state is over $15,000, and can rise substantially if there are complications,” Maharath said. “Too often, this cost is solely the mother’s to bear, especially in the case of an unintended pregnancy. However, the father shares equal responsibility for the pregnancy and it is only right that he pays equally for it.”

Maharath’s bill, which has been assigned to the Senate Judiciary Committee, calls for the minimum amount of damages awarded to be $5,000 plus court costs and attorneys fees. The statute of limitations would be five years.

Also, Sen. Matt Huffman, R-Tipp City, introduced legislation that would declare June 24 – the day the Roe v. Wade overturned decision was introduced – “Life Day” each year in the state.

"June 24, 2022 was a historic day in the United States, an overdue turning point in our nation's history," Huffman said. "Life Day will serve as a reminder for generations to come of our ongoing fight to protect human life, that we didn't quit fighting for their right to life, and the day that the highest court in the land reaffirmed our belief that every life is precious and deserving of dignity and respect."