Gov. Kasich signs into law Down syndrome abortion ban in Ohio

Ohio-Abortion-Laws

Similarly, anti-abortion activists at Susan B. Anthony List hailed the law's passage as "an early Christmas present" to unborn children with Down syndrome because it "created a safe haven from lethal discrimination".

John Kasich signed into law a controversial bill that makes it a crime for doctors to perform abortions if the woman wants to terminate her pregnancy because the fetus may have Down syndrome. Moreover, the law does not require a concrete diagnosis of down syndrome, but rather would prohibit abortion in cases where the fetus "has or may have Down syndrome".

As Cleveland.com reports, Kasich said in November he would wait to review the final bill before making a decision to either sign or veto the legislation.

Down syndrome is a genetic condition that affects cognitive ability, causing mild to severe learning disabilities and distinctive facial characteristics.

Abortion industry political lobbying group NARAL condemned the new law, claiming that it "shames women" and "exploits" families with children who have Down syndrome.

A 2012 study published by Prenatal Diagnosis suggests that while termination rates for Down syndrome pregnancies were trending downwards nationally in recent years, up to 85 percent of babies diagnosed with Down syndrome are killed.


Abortion rights groups in the state argued that the new law would be another blow to woman's constitutional right to legal abortion.

The American Civil Liberties Union of OH calls the legislation unconstitutional and says it's determining its next steps.

According to CNN, the law is set to take effect in 90 days, placing its effective date sometime in late March.

North Dakota and IN were ahead of OH IN passing similar restrictions, but Indiana's has been blocked by a judge. It will be the 20th abortion restriction Gov. Kasich has signed into law since taking office in 2011. It comes just three months after a U.S. District Court in IN issued an injunction against Indiana's Down syndrome abortion ban taking effect.

"Now that the Down syndrome Non-Discrimination Act is law, unborn babies prenatally diagnosed with Down syndrome are given a shot at life", said Mike Gonidakis, the president of Ohio Right to Life.

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