Ohio lawmakers passed a bill which would ban abortions when the heartbeats of the fetus become detectable at around six weeks.
The 'heartbeat bill' was approved by both the House and the Senate on December 6, and has been sent to Governor John Kasich who has 10 days to veto it. Otherwise, it will automatically became law.
The bill makes an exception when the life of the mother is in danger, but not for rape, incest, and anomalies in fetus.
After the Supreme Court legalized abortions in the country in 1973, some of the states allowed abortion restrictions, especially when the fetus becomes viable outside the womb, and pre-abortion counseling. Abortion restrictions in some of the states was blocked by lower courts.
"This bill could take away a woman's right to make her own medical decisions before she would have known she had a decision to make," Planned Parenthood wrote in response to the passage of bill.
NARAL Ohio is one of the pro-abortion groups which condemned the bill as restrictive.
"Banning women from getting a medical procedure is out of touch with Ohio values and is completely unacceptable," NARAL Ohio said in a statement.
The author of the bill and a former Christian radio talk show host, Janet Folger Porter, welcomed the approval of bill and wrote on her blog Faith2Action, "The Heartbeat Bill just passed the Ohio Senate, which had been held it up for the last six years. Praise the God of the impossible, whose name is Jesus! And thank you to all of you who called and emailed and prayed! The Ohio Heartbeat Bill, which will protect every child whose heartbeat can be detected."
The bill had been approved by the House twice before, but was rejected in the Senate. However, this time the lawmakers tried to pass it again and it succeeded because of anticipated changes in the new government, according to Senate President Keith Faber.
"A new president, new Supreme Court appointees change the dynamic, and there was consensus in our caucus to move forward," Faber told The Columbus Dispatch.
"It has a better chance than it did before," Faber said in reference to its chances of withstanding court trials.