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COLUMBUS, Ohio, December 9, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) — On Thursday, the Ohio House and Senate passed the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, which protects pre-born babies from painful late-term abortions and could be a direct challenge to Roe v. Wade.

The bill, S.B. 127, is now headed to Gov. John Kasich's desk.

“With the passage of this legislation, Ohio has taken a momentous step on the path to overturning Roe,” said Mike Gonidakis, president of Ohio Right to Life. “When enacted, this legislation will immediately begin saving hundreds of babies throughout Ohio, and be a part of a national movement that will save thousands of lives. By protecting children who can feel pain from the brutal practice of abortion, Ohio is challenging the archaic, arbitrary framework set up by seven activist judges more than 40 years ago.”  

This week, the Ohio Senate also passed a bill prohibiting abortions after a baby's heartbeat can be detected. This could save very young babies from abortion, as fetal heartbeats begin around 21 days after conception.

“The bold pro-life action taken by the Ohio legislature is reflective of the message the voters sent on Election Day, and that is a rejection of the status quo,” said Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of the Susan B. Anthony List (SBA List). “Americans reject the status quo of abortion on-demand, especially painful late-term abortions. Instead, voters and lawmakers are recognizing the humanity of the unborn child: its heartbeat around six weeks and the pain the child can feel at 20 weeks. Both the heartbeat bill and the Pain-Capable bill aim to humanize our law. Should either of these bills land in the Courts, the Courts should take the opportunity to catch our laws up with public opinion, science, and basic human decency. The Supreme Court hoped to settle the abortion issue when they decided Roe in 1973, and it has proven to be a spectacular failure. The will of the pro-life grassroots was validated on Election Day, and we won't stop fighting until all unborn children are protected under the law.”

Should Kasich sign the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act into law, Ohio would become the 18th state to pass the legislation since 2010. The U.S. House has approved a federal version of this legislation twice, and it has received 54 votes in the U.S. Senate. One of four major pro-life commitments President-elect Trump made is that he would sign the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act into law. 

“This historic moment is a critical step in the national effort to redefine the abortion debate and expand protections for the unborn,” Gonidakis said. “In the age of 4D ultrasounds and even 3D printed ultrasounds, abortion simply isn't the 'unknown' that it once was for Americans. We know that at this stage in pregnancy, these children are literally dismembered limb by limb and that the child has pain receptors present throughout her entire body. Ohio is eager to take the lead in rejecting this practice and leading the United States down a humane path that protects the most vulnerable among us.”

Planned Parenthood called the Heartbeat Hill “shameful” and “dangerous” and the Pain-Capable Bill “unconstitutional.”