Ohio Gov. John Kasich OKs 20-week abortion ban, nixes ‘heartbeat bill’

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Abortion

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio Gov. John Kasich has signed a 20-week abortion ban while vetoing stricter provisions in a separate measure that would have barred the procedure at the first detectable fetal heartbeat.

The Republican governor acted on both proposals Tuesday, December 13th — the same day they landed on this desk.

The heartbeat bill prohibited most abortions as early as six weeks into pregnancy. Its provisions cleared the Republican-led Legislature last week after being tucked into separate legislation.

Similar measures elsewhere have faced legal challenges, and detractors in Ohio feared such legislation would lead to a costly fight in the courts. Opponents predicted it would be found unconstitutional if it became law.

Kasich opposes abortion rights. The 20-week ban is similar to those now in effect in 15 states.

Legislators could override his veto.