COLUMBUS— State Representative Craig S. Riedel (R-Defiance) applauds House passage of Senate Bill 23, otherwise known as the Heartbeat Bill. This support was immediately followed by Governor Mike DeWine’s signature passing the bill into law. Senate Bill 23 will prohibit abortions after a fetal heartbeat is detected.
Mentioned in testimony back in March, the Right to Life Action Coalition of Ohio estimates that the legislation could save the lives of 17,000 unborn children annually in the state. The Ohio Dept. of Health statistics show that over 85% of abortions are performed on unborn children at 12 weeks or less.
“This bill protects the human right to life. I am pro-life to the hilt, from conception to natural death,” Rep. Riedel said.
Physicians who violate this law will be found guilty of a 5th degree felony. Senate Bill 23 also provides that a physician is not in violation of the law if that physician performs a medical procedure designed or intended to prevent the death or irreversible impairment of a major bodily function of a pregnant woman.
“It has been a long fight for life,” Rep. Riedel commented. Similar legislation, House Bill 258, was introduced and considered by the previous 132nd General Assembly of Ohio 2 years ago but did not have enough votes in the Senate to override Governor Kasich’s veto. “I am very proud of this legislation and it is great to see our Governor standing up for life and adding Ohio to this historic conservative movement.”
Senate Bill 23 was signed by Governor DeWine on April 11, 2019 making Ohio the third state this year, along with Kentucky and Mississippi, to pass legislation banning abortion as early as six weeks into a pregnancy. After signing the bill in Ohio, Governor DeWine said, “It is the government’s role to protect the most vulnerable among us.”
The Heartbeat Bill is set to go into effect 90 days after it is filed with the Ohio Secretary of State’s office.