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· May 2, 2012

Ohio Could Learn From Oklahoma

Constitutional amendments and legislation to define a fertilized egg as a person, effectively banning all abortions along with many types of birth control and threatening fertility treatments such as in-vitro fertilization, have been moving in states across the nation and Ohio is no different. On Monday, in a win for the women of Oklahoma, the Oklahoma Supreme Court declared Oklahoma’s Personhood petition initiative unconstitutional. The Oklahoma Supreme Court noted that this law was in violation of the 1992 U.S. Supreme Court decision Planned Parenthood v. Casey, which upheld the constitutional right to have an abortion. Using strong language the court said the measure was ‘void on is face,’ and that “The only course available to this court is to follow what the United States Supreme Court, the final arbiter of the United States Constitution, has decreed.” Like the Oklahoma amendment, the Ohio amendment would define a fertilized egg as a person. In response to Monday’s ruling the ACLU Reproductive Freedom Project said that “the Oklahoma court has sent a strong message that attempts to pass laws that are so hostile to women’s rights and health will not prevail in a court of law.”  As Ohio advocates continue to push for this extreme law they should take note of this message from the courts.

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