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ACLU and Planned Parenthood File Lawsuit in Ohio Supreme Court to Block Enforcement of Heartbeat Law


The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), Planned Parenthood, and a group of Ohio abortion facilities filed a lawsuit Wednesday in Ohio Supreme Court that seeks to overturn the state’s heartbeat law, which began being enforced soon after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey.

The pro-abortion groups claim in the lawsuit Ohioans have a “fundamental right to abortion” under the Ohio Constitution, “as guaranteed by the Ohio Constitution’s broad protections for individual liberties under Article I, Sections 1, 16, and 21, and the equal protection guarantee under Article I, Section 2.”

“Swift action from this Court is necessary to stop the ongoing, irreparable harm being inflicted on Ohioans,” the abortion groups claim. “Each day that S.B. 23 is in effect, women who need abortion care – including women who had already scheduled that care – are being turned away at clinics and denied their fundamental right to an abortion.”

“The Constitution does not confer a right to abortion,” the U.S. Supreme Court held Friday in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization. “Roe and Casey are overruled; and the authority to regulate abortion is returned to the people and their elected representatives.”

Aaron Baer, president of Center for Christian Virtue, an Ohio Christian public policy organization, said in a statement the ACLU and Planned Parenthood “are trying to create an abortion mandate in the Ohio Constitution out of thin air.”

“Over the last 20 years, no serious legal scholar – even pro-abortion legal scholars – have attempted to claim that abortion is mandated under the state constitution,” he asserted. “The truth is, the abortion industry has lost the debate amongst the voters, now they’re hoping for a bailout from the State Supreme Court. The Court must swiftly reject this case.”

Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost filed a motion to end a federal court’s injunction against the Ohio heartbeat law that had passed the state legislature in 2019.

Judge Michael Barrett of U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio subsequently lifted the preliminary injunction that had blocked enforcement of the heartbeat law.

Gov. Mike DeWine (R) then signed an executive order permitting the Ohio Department of Health to immediately adopt the rules established in the bill.

The law prohibits most abortions once a fetal heartbeat can be detected, generally at about six weeks’ gestation.

“Abortion activists have comprised a deadly concoction of disjointed and unrelated phrases from the Ohio Constitution to justify their nonsensical actions,” Baer said. “Center for Christian Virtue is grateful to have Attorney General Dave Yost serving the state to defend the law and defeat this harmful lawsuit.”

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Susan Berry, PhD, is national education editor at The Star News Network. Email tips to [email protected]



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