New Ohio abortion bill getting international attention

Local News

(CNN) — Reproductive rights advocates are concerned over a proposed abortion bill in Ohio that they say would not only ban abortion after six weeks of pregnancy but also require a medical procedure that’s never been done and may not actually work.

The bill could also lead to the death penalty for abortion providers in some cases.

Ohio House Bill 413 is 723 pages and is catching international attention.

RELATED: Abortion bill suggests doctors reimplant ectopic pregnancies

It would make it possible to charge doctors who end pregnancies with “abortion murder,” facing 15 years to life in prison unless the mother’s life was in danger or in certain aggravated cases, punishable by death.

“In a lot of ways, I think it makes Ohio look extreme and foolish, ” said Jessie Hill, associate dean for Academic Affairs at Case Western’s School of Law.

Hill specializes in Constitutional Law and Reproductive Rights.

“It is extremely unusual for a law that is purported to be a pro-life measure to go this far and to threaten people with the death penalty for seeking a healthcare procedure,” Hill said.

H.B. 413 would also require doctors try to save ectopic pregnancies, where the pregnancy is growing outside of the uterus, by reimplanting the fetus in the uterus — something even pro-life OBGYNs argue isn’t medically possible.

“You can’t find a single medical expert to support the idea that there is this treatment, a viable treatment that is described in the bill,” Hill said.

When Gov. Mike DeWine signed the heartbeat abortion bill into law in April, he did so knowing that measure would be challenged in the courts as it immediately was.

“We have a vehicle for the United States Supreme Court so that should it be ready to do so it could revisit some of its prior rulings,” DeWine said.

Specifically Roe v. Wade, the 1973 decision that legalized abortion across the country.

Ohio is one of several states with cases seeking to challenge Roe v. Wade — a move that pro-life groups feel faces greater odds once Justice Brett Kavanaugh was seated.

All of this is playing out ahead of 2020.

“We have a big chunk of our electorate on both sides that vote on that issue alone and they could agree with you on 99 percent of the other issues but if you differ with them on the issue of abortion you will never get their vote,” said Tom Sutton, a political analyst.

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