COLUMBUS, OHIO –
After much discussion, controversy, and a governor’s veto, the Ohio State Congress and Senate have passed one major bill while failing to achieve the votes on another.
The Ohio House on Thursday voted 60-28 to approve the so-called “Heartbeat bill” that was vetoed by Governor Kaisch earlier in the year. The bill would have banned abortions after the fetal heartbeat was detected, pushing the ban to as early as six weeks into a pregnancy. Changes were made to the bill after the veto, adding exemptions for rape and incest as well as provisions for emergency contraception. However, the changes weren’t enough to win Kaisch’s approval, nor the Senate votes to override the veto, with the bill failing 19-13 – one vote shy of the number needed to approve the bill.
Kasich stated in response to the veto that the law was counter to current SOCTUS rulings, and would likely be the target of lawsuits.
The controversial “Stand Your Ground” law, however, passed both in Ohio’s houses with a 67-22 vote in the Congress and 21-11 in the Senate to override the governor’s veto power.
According to the Ohio Gun Owner’s Association, the following features will become law in Ohio:
- Shifts the burden of proof back to the prosecutor so that you are innocent until proven guilty. Ohio is the only state in the U.S. that makes gun owners guilty until proven innocent in matters of self-defense.
- Strengthens “preemption” provisions in Ohio law that prevent local governments from passing their own gun laws.
- Aligns the definition of “shotgun” to mirror Federal law to end the confusion about the Mossberg Shockwave and similar firearms that are currently legal under federal law but illegal under Ohio state law.
- Eliminates the requirement to post no-gun signs in locations which have authorized the carrying of firearms.
- Puts teeth into the law so that authorities can prosecute criminals who make “straw” purchases for felons.
Pickaway County Lawyer and Commission Brian Stewart stated that “Shifting the burden of proof from you to the government when protecting your family in self-defense has precisely nothing to do with the ‘gun lobby’. We are the only state left where this is not the law.”