Abortion Facility Challenges Funding for Pregnancy Centers
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: Katherine Franklin
DATE: Wednesday, August 24, 2016 PHONE: 614-547-0099 ext. 304
COLUMBUS, Ohio—On Monday, Attorney General Mike DeWine filed an appeal in the Ohio Supreme Court in the case of Preterm v. Kasich, defending several pro-life initiatives in the 2013-2014 budget bill. Those provisions include the Pregnancy and Parenting Support Program, which provides funding for pregnancy centers; statutes requiring ambulatory surgical facilities to have written transfer agreements; ban on taxpayer-funded hospitals signing such agreements with abortion facilities; and the Heartbeat Informed Consent Act, which requires abortionists to attempt to detect a fetal heartbeat 24 hours in advance of the abortion, and to offer the woman the opportunity to hear it.
"The abortion industry's baseless challenge of common-sense pro-life initiatives demonstrates how extreme they really are," said Devin Scribner, executive director of Ohio Right to Life. "Not only have they rejected an important expansion of informed consent for abortion-vulnerable women, they are also retaliating against funding for pregnancy centers—critical community staples that empower women and assist them with emotional and material support long after the birth of their babies. On its face, their rejection of both of these provisions is a rejection of choice and information for women."
Preterm, Cleveland's largest abortion facility, challenged the provisions in 2013. The trial court granted summary of judgement to the state because the facility lacked standing and was not injured by any of the provisions. The Eighth Appellate District Court reversed the decision in a fractured 2-1 ruling. Attorney General DeWine argues that the appellate court's broadened definition of standing undermines "the most important check on the judiciary under the Constitution's separation of powers." Preterm admitted that it was not injured by funding for pregnancy centers, and the Attorney General demonstrates that neither of the transfer agreement laws injures the facility because it has had a transfer agreement with a private hospital for 10 years. Finally, the Heartbeat Informed Consent Act regulates abortionists, not abortion facilities.
“On behalf of our board, our affiliates, and our statewide membership, Ohio Right to Life thanks Attorney General Mike DeWine for defending common sense pro-life measures," said Scribner. "Thanks to the Attorney General's work, Ohioans can see right through the abortion industry's phony attempt to play the victim. Perhaps by the end of this, all will see that the real victims in the abortion debate are the one million children who are aborted each year in the name of 'choice.'"
Preterm is located in Cuyahoga County where 8,548 abortions were recorded in 2014. That accounts for 40 percent of abortions performed in the state, the largest share of the 21,186 abortions performed in Ohio that year.
Founded in 1967, Ohio Right to Life, with more than 45 chapters and local affiliates, is Ohio's oldest and largest grassroots pro-life organization. Recognized as the flagship of the pro-life movement in Ohio, ORTL works through legislation and education to promote and defend innocent human life from conception to natural death.