Ohio bill would prohibit abortions in Down syndrome cases

The GOP-led Ohio state Senate on Wednesday passed a ban on abortions based on a diagnosis of Down syndrome, and Republican Gov. John Kasich has sent signals that he will soon sign the measure into law.

Lawmakers voted 20-12 in favor of the ban, which would prohibit doctors from performing an abortion if doctors know that it is being sought, “in whole or in part,” to avoid a Down syndrome pregnancy.

Doctors who violate the ban would lose their medical license and face a fourth-degree felony charge, including up to a $5,000 fine and 18 months in prison. Mothers would not be punished by the law.

Three Republicans voted against the measure, which was opposed by all of the state Senate’s Democratic lawmakers.

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