SB 208 – Born Alive After Abortion Infant Protection Act

The senate acted on two pieces of Pro-Life legislation this week, passing both SB 155 (Abortion Pill Reversal) and SB 208 (Born Alive After Abortion Infant Protection) with large majorities. These bills were reported from the Senate Health, Human Services, & Medicaid Committee on mainly party-line votes (with notable exception of Republican Senator Stephanie Kunze of Hilliard, who voted against SB 155 both in committee and on the Senate floor). Two amendments, offered by the Right to Life Action Coalition of Ohio, were adopted into SB 155. The first amendment ensures the website address for the Ohio Department of Health (who is tasked with maintaining info on APR protocols and providers) is given to the woman, and the second raises the legal standard from “believes” (subjective and legally fungible) to “using reasonable medical judgment” (objective and legally actionable) for a provider to determine an emergency exists that would excuse them from penalties for not providing the APR information to a woman. The final votes for SB 155 were 22 in favor and 10 against; votes for SB 208 were 24 in favor and nine against. Both bills move to the Ohio House for assignment to committee and hearings.

From Friday 5 – November 8, 2019

The Senate Health, Human Services, and Medicaid Committee has scheduled hearings with potential votes on both SB 155/Abortion Pill Reversal and SB 208/Born Alive After Abortion Infant Protection Act. Both bills are scheduled for open testimony (proponents, opponents, and interested parties), and SB 155 is marked for potential amendments (we have offered two to the bill’s sponsor and will see if they are included). If you are interested in attending, testifying, or submitting written comments, please contact me by the weekend. The committee meets on Tuesday, Nov. 5 at 9:30 a.m. in the Senate South Hearing room.

From Friday 5 – November 1, 2019

An amendment was added to Senate Bill 208, Senator Terry Johnson’s bill to protect children born after a botched abortion attempt. The amendment, offered by Senate Health Committee Chairman, Senator Dave Burke of Marysville, would mandate care steps that an abortion provider (in an ambulatory surgical facility, or ASF) must do when the child is born alive. This is a well-thought amendment, as it requires, under penalty of law for failure to follow, that the provider needs to stabilize and protect the child’s health, call emergency services, and ensure the baby is transported to a hospital for care.

From Friday 5 – October 25, 2019

Another Pro-Life Bill, Senate Bill 208, also was heard in the Senate Health Committee on Tuesday. Senate Bill 208, to protect children born alive after failed abortion attempts, was also given support testimony hearing. Again, I was asked to testify first on the bill. Again, pro-abortion Senators attacked the testimony, arguing there are no reports of babies being left to die by abortionists after they botch an abortion (my paraphrase). My reply: Exactly. That’s why SB 208 establishes a mandatory reporting form with criminal penalties for not filing the reports. The bill is marked for opponent (read: pro-abort) testimony on Tuesday, October 22nd.

From Friday 5 – October 18, 2019

Next Tuesday, the Ohio Senate Health, Human Services, and Medicaid Committee will be hearing proponent testimony on two Pro-Life bills (the committee will meet at 1:30 p.m. in the Senate South Hearing Room). Senate Bill 155 seeks to establish protocols for providing information on reversing chemical abortions (abortion pill reversal) which are begun but the woman changes her mind in the middle of the abortion process. Senate Bill 208 would establish State-level penalties for providers who botch an abortion procedure and then allow the born-alive infant to die without care (or worse yet, like in the case of Kermit Gosnell, perform a “post-birth” abortion). Anyone wishing to testify or submit written testimony must file this with the chairman’s office by 1:00 p.m. on Monday, October 14th.

From Friday 5 – October 11, 2019