COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — Thursday, the attempt to override Gov. Kasich’s veto of the heartbeat abortion ban bill failed.
The Ohio House voted earlier Thursday to override the veto 60-28; it then went to the Senate for a final vote. The Senate voted 19-13; 20 votes in favor of overriding the veto from the 33 members were needed.
The bill sought to ban abortions after the first fetal heartbeat is detected, as early as six weeks into a pregnancy. An amendment to add exceptions for rape and incest, and an amendment to provide rape victims with emergency contraception to prevent unwanted pregnancies, were tabled before the Senate first voted to pass the bill 18-13 before it headed back to the House.
The House voted and approved the changes to the bill that the Senate made; one amendment added could have doctors lose their medical license before they are convicted of criminal charges. The other amendment removes the transvaginal ultrasound requirement to detect the heartbeat. While this is the most effective way to detect a heartbeat there are other ways to do it without that procedure. The bill then went to Gov. Kasich’s desk, and he vetoed it. Kasich said the bill’s provisions are contrary to current Supreme Court rulings on abortion and would likely be struck down by the courts.
After the failure Thursday by the Senate to override Kasich’s veto, Senate President Larry Obhof said cheers from the pro-choice advocates will likely be short lived.
State Senator Bill Beagle cast the crucial no vote that kept the Senate from overriding the veto. Beagle, who voted to pass the bill out of committee and to pass it on the floor when it passed the first time, stunned everyone when he cast the deciding “no” vote, causing the override to fail.
We talked to the senator exclusively after the vote.
“There should be a standard. There’s a standard for a bill to pass, and I think that there’s a higher standard for it to be overridden if it’s vetoed, and in looking at House Bill 258 I just didn’t think it met the standard,” Beagle explained. “Especially when you’ve got a Governor-Elect who’s considering signing a bill in the next General Assembly.”
Joining the Democrats and Beagle in voting no to overriding the governor were Republican senators John Eklund, Matt Dolan, Stepanie Kunze, and Gayle Manning.