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Abortion Rights Activists Protest Two Pending, Restricitive Bills

Nov 17, 2016

Credit Ohio Public Radio

State lawmakers are expected to consider two bills that restrict abortions during the upcoming lame duck session.

Abortion rights advocates protested last night to try to convince lawmakers to scrap those bills. Ohio Public Radio's Jo Ingles reports.

(open with chants)
Supporters of legal abortion chanted, held signs and hands on the sidewalks around
Capitol Square. Stephanie Craddock Sherwood is with the group Women Have Options.
She says the election has energized people who want to protect abortion rights.
“I’m hearing people have woken up. We have had unprecedented support this past week.
It’s incredible the show of support. People are ready to come out. They are ready to
march. They are ready to build a wall of resistance to these abortion bans, to any
barriers to any access to abortion.”
Gabriel Mann of NARAL Pro Choice Ohio says the group wants to stop lawmakers from
taking up two bills in the next couple of weeks.
“One is a 20 week abortion ban. The other is a restriction on the handling of
biological material. Either one of these bills could be called up in a committee. We
don’t think they should be because they are medically unnecessary.”
But Ohio Right to Life President Mike Gonadakis questions the  effectiveness of the
protest.
“If they truly effectuate change, they should do it between the hours of 8 and 5
when the legislators are there.”
Gonadakis hopes lawmakers will pass the two bills under consideration because he
says that’s what voters want.
“The legislature and our Governor would argue that Ohioans, just a week ago,
affirmed the things they are doing. They went from 65 to 66 members – all pro-life
in the House. We went from 23 to 24 – all pro-life in the Senate. So if they were
doing something that relates to the life matter that voters opposed, they would have
voted for somebody else.”
Gonadakis says both bills have been in the works for a year and a half and are
constitutional.