Republicans in Ohio are proposing stripping judges of their power to interpret the new abortion amendment that a majority of voters approved in Tuesday’s election.
Now, four Republican state lawmakers want to strip the courts of their authority to repeal existing restrictions and bans on abortion in Ohio.
“To prevent mischief by pro-abortion courts with Issue 1, Ohio legislators will consider removing jurisdiction from the judiciary over this ambiguous ballot initiative,” Reps. Jennifer Gross, Bill Dean, Melanie Miller, and Beth Lear wrote in a press release, according to the Associated Press. “The Ohio legislature alone will consider what, if any, modifications to make to existing laws based on public hearings and input from legal experts on both sides.”
Republicans control both chambers of the Ohio legislature and the governor’s mansion. In 2019, they passed legislation banning abortions after 6 weeks with no exceptions for rape and incest. The law went into effect after the US Supreme Court overturned Roe v Wade. A lower court in the state granted a preliminary injunction weeks later amid backlash after a 10-year-old rape victim was forced to travel to Indiana for an abortion.
In a separate statement issued through an anti-abortion organization Gross said: “We will withdraw jurisdiction from the courts so that they cannot misapply Issue 1 for the benefit of the abortion industry.”
The proposal is already getting push back from both Democrats and Republicans.
“Issue 1 passed thanks to the votes of a lot of Republicans who do not like the idea of government overstep. They don’t want government interference in people’s private lives,” Gabriel Mann, a spokesman for the Issue 1 campaign told Cincinnati.com.
Former justice and Republican lawmaker Paul Pfeifer told the outlet: “The Supreme Court of Ohio is the final arbiter of constitutional issues. Period. There’s no getting around that, so legislation that attempts to circumvent the constitution eventually isn’t going to go anywhere.”
The conservative majority on the Ohio Supreme Court will have the final say in state constitutional issues.