Abortion foes in Ohio lobby for strict bill

Associated Press


Supporters of an Ohio bill that would impose the nation’s strictest abortion limit are preparing stepped-up attacks as lawmakers return to Columbus.

National Right to Life founder Jack Willke demands in a full-page newspaper ad that was expected to run in the Columbus Dispatch today that the bill restricting abortions after the first detectable heartbeat be passed right away and not be watered down.

Willke, of Cincinnati, says in the ad obtained by The Associated Press that without passage, the bill’s backers will fight to replace nonsupporters in the fall election.

“Tell the Ohio GOP Senate to pass the strongest Heartbeat Bill now — or we will work to replace them with people who will,” Willke’s letter concludes. The 87-year-old Willke calls the bill’s passage his dying wish.

The ad, listing names and numbers of senators resistant to passing the bill, is to appear the first day of House and Senate sessions after lawmakers’ spring break. The effort will be accompanied by thousands of emails, and robocalls in which Willke asks abortion foes to inundate senators to get the bill passed.

The effort follows a month of relative quiet in the quest by the vocal anti-abortion group Faith2Action and a political action committee newly created this year to pass the bill.

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