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Tipsheet

Ohio State Lawmakers Introduce ‘Heartbeat Bill’ Replicating Texas’ Abortion Law

AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, File

State lawmakers in Ohio introduced a bill this week that emulates abortion restrictions enacted in Texas that are currently being challenged at the Supreme Court.

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The bill, House Bill 480, also known as the “2363 Act,” echoes Texas’ S.B. 8, the law that took effect Sept. 1 that bans all abortions after fetal heartbeat detection. S.B. 8 allows citizens to pursue legal action against anyone who provides an illegal abortion or “aids or abets” someone seeking an illegal abortion. Those who successfully bring lawsuits under S.B. 8 can receive $10,000.

Ohio’s H.B. 480 outlaws all abortions and allows lawsuits against anyone who “knowingly engages in conduct that aids or abets the performance of inducement of an abortion.” It includes a ban on administering, procuring, or selling of any instrument, medicine, or any other substance or means with the intent to terminate a pregnancy.

H.B. 480 allows a defense against civil action for abortions “designed or intended to  prevent the death of a pregnant mother and the physician made reasonable medical efforts under the circumstances to preserve both the life of the mother and the life of the unborn child in a manner consistent with conventional medical practice.”

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Currently, Texas’ S.B. 8 is facing challenges in the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS). On Nov. 1, the SCOTUS heard two cases against the law, Whole Woman’s Health v. Jackson and United States v. Texas. The latter is the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) lawsuit against Texas over the law.

In a statement to pro-life nonprofit Live Action, state Rep. Jena Powell, a Republican, said that she is proud to be sponsoring the bill and that the bill will protect the lives of women and unborn children. 

“I am proud to be championing The 2363 Act in Ohio, as this legislation will change the landscape of Ohio and the United States,” Powell told Live Action. “It is time for legislators across the country to boldly stand up for the right to life of pre-born children, and I am excited that The 2363 Act will end abortion and protect the lives of women and children across our great nation.”

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