Ohio House approves abortion ban after heartbeat
COLUMBUS (Reuters) - The Ohio House of Representatives on Tuesday voted to ban abortions after a fetal heartbeat is detectable, which can be as early as six weeks.
The House voted 54 to 43 for the ban, along party lines, with most Republicans voting in favor.
If enacted, the law would be a challenge to the U.S. Supreme Court's 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling which upheld a woman's right to an abortion until the fetus is viable outside the womb, usually at 22-24 weeks.
Republican Ohio House Speaker William Batchelder said he knows this bill will face a court challenge.
"We're writing bills for courts," he said.
The bill now goes to the Republican-dominated Ohio Senate.
The Ohio House also passed two other abortion restrictions Tuesday, one that would ban late-term abortions after 20 weeks if a doctor determines that the fetus is viable outside the womb. Another bill excludes abortion coverage from the state insurance exchange created by the federal health care law.
The late-term ban already was passed by the Ohio Senate.