DeWine rejects legislation to criminalize abortion

Matt Poe

An amendment seeking to criminalize abortion in Ohio was rejected after failing to receive the required number of signatures.

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine rejected the petition after it received a valid 842 votes but fell short of its necessary goal of 1,000 voter eligible signatures.

Laura Burton of Cleveland, Anthony Dipane of Monroe Falls and Dustin Paulson of Strasburg are the three individuals who proposed the amendment but are not linked to any Right of Life groups or other pro-abortion advocacy groups, according to The Toledo Blade.

Mara Cash, president of the Club for Feminists at Kent State and sophomore psychology major, said she wasn’t too concerned about the amendment passing.

She believes, however, that there is still a major cause for concern.

“There is this group that really believes that women should be punished for these kinds of decisions (abortion) and that’s a very big deal and very dangerous,” Cash said.

Had the amendment passed, a woman who received an abortion would be charged with aggravated murder and sentenced to 15 years to life in prison.

Madison Newingham, president of Planned Parenthood Advocates for Kent State and a sophomore political science major, said this type of proposed legislation needs to be avoided going further.

“The whole situation is such a shame because it’s taking us back to the ’70s,” Newhingham said. “It’s unconstitutional and, obviously they wanted to make a statement, but it was almost hard to take this seriously.”

The landmark 1973 Supreme Court case, Roe v. Wade, declared abortion a women’s right but has remained challenged and controversial since. In March, a group in Oklahoma attempted to propose similar legislation that was eventually shot down as well.

Although the proposed amendment dealt primarily with abortion, Cash sees the issue as just a small battle in a larger fight for women’s rights.

“A lot of people will say Republicans are waging a war on women,” she said. “I don’t think that’s necessarily true, but it’s actions like this that are the war on women.”

Matt Poe is a senior reporter, contact him at [email protected]