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Heartbeat Bill’s new lease on life

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Backers of an Ohio bill to effectively ban abortions after the first detectable fetal heartbeat are declaring “Round 2” in what is likely an uphill fight for the proposal.

The bill’s previous sponsor Lynn Wachtmann (R-Napoleon) and several other Republican state lawmakers said Thursday they are reintroducing the so-called “heartbeat bill.”

Supporters hope the stringent nature of the heartbeat bill will provoke a legal challenge with the potential to overturn the U.S. Supreme Court’s 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling that legalized abortion up until viability, usually at 22 to 24 weeks.

A fetal heartbeat can be detected as early as six weeks into pregnancy.

Ohio sponsors acknowledged there could be hesitation from the GOP-led Senate to act on the bill. The abortion measure died last year in that chamber.

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