Hold on Ohio Abortion Restriction to Last at Least Two More Weeks

Hamilton County Court of Common Pleas Judge Christian Jenkins (D) this week indicated he will extend his hold on a significant Ohio abortion-restricting law for two additional weeks. 

Jenkins’s decision prolongs the effect of a decision he made last week to obstruct the Heartbeat Act’s implementation, with the initial freeze to last two weeks. The state General Assembly passed and Governor Mike DeWine (R) signed the bill (SB 23) in 2019. The legislation, which prohibits aborting unborn children who have detectable heartbeats, could not take effect until this year after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion nationwide. 

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Ohio Supreme Court Rules for Gibson’s Bakery over Oberlin College

Ohio’s Supreme Court on Tuesday sided with Gibson’s Bakery in its libel case against Oberlin College, declining to hear the school’s appeal and permitting the family-owned establishment to collect over $36 million in damages. 

The litigation against Oberlin and Dean of Students Meredith Raimondo stemmed from uncorroborated accusations of racism that the Gibson family believes initially cost their store half its patronage. In June 2019, a Lorain County court ordered the school to pay the bakers $32 million. About $4.5 million in interest has accumulated since that ruling. 

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Ohio Pro-Abortion Amendment Anticipated to Appear as Ballot Question

Planned Parenthood Advocates of Ohio announced this week they are working to place a state constitutional amendment protecting abortion rights on the election ballot in Ohio. 

The prospective effort comes as abortion proponents’ confidence surges after Kansas voters rejected a constitutional amendment that would have stipulated that the Kansas Constitution does not contain the right to terminate a pregnancy failed by a vote of 59 percent to 41 percent. 

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Ohio Secretary of State Announces Board of Education Districts; Democrats Object

Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose (R) announced this week that the state Board of Education district boundaries will conform to the plan Gov. Mike DeWine (R) issued in January, spurring objections from Democratic lawmakers.

Nineteen individuals sit on the state Board of Education, with 11 of them standing for election. Five of the elected seats are up in this fall’s general election and those wishing to run must file by August 10.

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Ohio Supreme Court Tosses Redistricting Maps – Again

Calling the actions of Republicans on the Ohio Redistricting Commission a “stunning rebuke of the rule of law,” the Ohio Supreme Court rejected for a fifth time a set of Ohio House and Senate district maps.

The decision came three days before a deadline set by federal judges, who said they would implement maps ruled unconstitutional if no new legal maps were created.

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