Ohio Ballot Proposal Would Classify Abortion as Murder

By Eric Scheiner | September 8, 2016 | 2:28pm EDT


Image of proposed Ohio amendment. (Ohio AG Office) is reporting a proposal to amend the Ohio Constitution to classify abortion as aggravated murder has been presented to the state attorney general.

The proposed constitutional amendment titled, "To criminalize the killing, known as 'abortion,' of all pre-born human beings in the Ohio Constitution," could go before voters in 2017.

The amendment would "prohibit abortion of all unborn human beings, without exception, and classifing it as aggravated murder in the State of Ohio."

The language of the measure allows for contraception to prevent pregnancy, and would not affect procedures involving unfertilized eggs or “reproductive technology or IVF (In vitro fertilization) procedures that respect the right to life of newly created human beings.”

Ohio requires the proposal be accompanied with a minimum of 1,000 signatures from registered voters. The sheets of petition signatures that have been turned in will have to be referred to county boards of election for validation.

The amendment petitions were submitted by three Ohio residents and the effort is not connected to any pro-life organization.

Even if the petition signatures are deemed valid, Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine's office decides whether the summary that appears on petitions describes the proposed ballot issue accurately.  The state attorney general's review process does not include examining if the amendment could withstand a legal challenge.

The Ohio Supreme Court holds exclusive jurisdiction on hearing any challenge to the amendment. 

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