Abortion Amendment Ballot Intiative


“Moms and dads will be cut out of the most important and life-altering decisions of their child’s life, if this passes.” 

-Molly Smith, Board Member, Protect Women Ohio

COLUMBUS, OH — A new pro-woman, pro-parent coalition, Protect Women Ohio (PWO), launched a multi-million-dollar television and digital ad campaign statewide today aimed at defeating an extreme amendment to the Ohio Constitution. PWO will spend $5 million on advertising in the state over the next four weeks for this first phase of its effort to defeat the amendment.

“Moms and dads will be cut out of the most important and life-altering decisions of their child’s life, if this passes,” said Molly Smith, Board Member, Protect Women Ohio. “This extreme amendment eliminates any current or future protections for minors requiring parents be notified and consent before their child undergoes a procedure like an abortion or sex change surgery. Ohioans must vote ‘no’ on this dangerous proposal.”


Smith explained the amendment language clearly prohibits any law that “directly or indirectly” would “burden” or “interfere” with any “reproductive decisions.” Those are specific legal terms which have been interpreted by courts across the country to strike down parental notification and consent laws.

Watch the ad HERE.

A legal analysis of the extreme anti-parent amendment is available HERE from constitutional scholars Carrie Campbell Severino, President of Judicial Crisis Network, and Frank J. Scaturro, a former special counsel to the House Select Investigative Panel on Infant Lives.


Protect Women Ohio is a coalition of concerned family and life leaders, parents, health and medical experts, and faith leaders in Ohio. Molly Smith, Founding Member of Right to Life Action Coalition of Ohio, Aaron Baer, president of Center for Christian Virtue, and Peter Range, CEO of Ohio Right to Life, serve as members of the PWO Board of Directors. 

To learn more please visit www.protectwomenohio.com

Anti-Parent Amendment Messaging:


The amendment language clearly prohibits any law that “directly or indirectly” would “burden” or “interfere” with any “reproductive decisions.” Those are specific legal terms which have been interpreted by courts across the country to strike down parental notification and consent laws.

Summary Statement

This amendment would enshrine in the Ohio constitution an extreme abortion regime that would prevent common sense, common ground protections for women and children which are supported by large majorities in Ohio and across the country.


The amendment’s very title is a lie

  1. The abortion industry’s amendment campaign is deceptive and designed to mislead voters into supporting a dangerous and extreme agenda.

  1. “The Right to Reproductive Freedom with Protections for Health and Safety” contains no protections for health and safety.

  1. In reality, the amendment would eliminate existing health and safety protections for women in Ohio law.  It would invalidate current laws that ensure a woman is screened and counseled by a licensed doctor who can transfer her into a local hospital if something goes wrong.

The amendment protects abortion providers’ financial interests over women’s health

  1. Amendment language purporting to allow protections for viable unborn babies gives the abortionist the final decision on whether the child is viable.
  2. This abortion-industry-led initiative would require taxpayer funding of abortions.
  3. Alaska taxpayers are forced to pay for elective abortions because the state supreme court found that a right to abortion in the state constitution created a mandate for taxpayer funding.

The amendment blindfolds parents to their child’s health needs

  1. The amendment would even remove the basic rights of parents. Parents would no longer need to be informed or provide consent for their underage daughter to undergo an abortion.

  1. The amendment language clearly forbids any law that “directly or indirectly” would “burden” or “interfere” with any “reproductive decisions.” Those are specific legal terms which have been interpreted by courts across the country to strike down parental notification and consents laws. This has already occurred in deep blue states like California and Vermont, but even in Florida, a bad court case prevented parents from knowing if their minor daughter sought an abortion for three decades.

Protects rapists, traffickers, and abusers

  1. The amendment explicitly protects third parties who “assist” abortions for underage girls.

Legalizes painful, late-term abortions

  1. The amendment would bring painful, late-term abortions, including abortions right up until the moment of birth, to the state of Ohio providing no protections for the unborn. 


  1. The amendment language clearly forbids any law that “directly or indirectly” would “burden” or “interfere” with any “reproductive decisions.” Those are specific legal terms which have been interpreted by courts across the country to require states to fund abortions.

  1. It also contains a massive loophole allowing abortion post-viability if “it is necessary to protect the pregnant patient’s life or health.” When the “health” is specifically left undefined, courts have always interpreted it to include “mental health,”; others have included “financial” and “social health”, making it effectively impossible to enforce any protections at any time during a pregnancy.

Key Facts and Polling Notes

  1. A Harvard-Harris national poll found 72% of voters would limit abortions by no later than 15 weeks, including 75% of women, 70% of Independents and 60% of rank-and-file Democrats.


  1. 69% of Americans support limiting abortion to, at most, the first three months of pregnancy – this includes 72% of women, 71% of Independents and nearly half of rank-and-file Democrats.



Model statements for press releases:

  1. We look forward to exposing the dangers of this extreme amendment being pushed on Ohio by the abortion industry. If passed, it would cancel parental rights and measures in place to protect young girls; basic health and safety protections for women would be wiped out; and it would make Ohio home to painful late term abortions right up until birth.

  1. This dangerous and extreme amendment is anti-parent and anti-woman. It completely abolishes current Ohio law guaranteeing parental involvement before any abortion is performed on their minor daughter. It also removes critical health and safety protections for Ohio women that are currently in place. If this amendment passes, the wellbeing of Ohio’s women and girls would be sacrificed so that the abortion industry can bring painful late term abortion to our state. Ohioans must reject this proposal.

  1. This extreme amendment would annihilate parental rights and measures currently in place to protect young girls. It would also wipe out basic health and safety protections for women, while enabling painful abortions up until the moment of birth. We look forward to further exposing the abortion industry’s efforts to line their pockets at the expense of women and will fight to prevent Ohio from becoming one of the most permissive states in the country for abortion.

Quips, Tough Questions, 1-Liners:

  1. This effort to rewrite our constitution would make Ohio home to extreme abortion.

  1. It was purposely written without safeguards against painful, late-term abortion.

  1. The abortion industry wants to force Ohio to allow abortion any time, for any reason, right up to birth. That would include abortions when the unborn baby can feel pain, paid for by taxpayers, and would permit no protections for the most vulnerable.

  1. This extreme rewrite of the constitution would even remove the basic rights of parents.

  1. Parents would no longer need to be informed or provide consent for their underage girl to undergo an abortion and would even outlaw existing health and safety regulations that protect women.

  1. This amendment puts women in danger. Basic health and safety standards to protect patients would be eliminated for abortions in the proposed re-writing of the constitution, endangering women’s health.

  1. Ohioans should reject this dangerous attempt to lower standards for women’s health.

  1. This amendment would remove the guardrails currently protecting young women from abortion coercion. Not only will health standards be lowered for women, but the proposed changes would also provide no protection for women being pressured or coerced to get an abortion. The most vulnerable women are the most susceptible to being forced into unwanted abortions and no safeguards are provided to protect them.

  1. These radical changes to our constitution are not being championed by Ohioans, but by out of state special interest groups with a political agenda to force every taxpayer to subsidize abortions up to birth, when an unborn baby can feel pain and you can hear its heartbeat, with no basic, commonsense protections.

  1. Ohioans need to reject this radical liberal push to rewrite our constitution to remove parental rights, doing away with Ohio parental consent laws that protect minor girls, and outlawing basic protections for women.

  1. Even the most ardent supporters of this extreme abortion amendment admit they are counting on politicians to add safeguards and parental rights after November. The result will be a mess of lawsuits and legal fights that will take years to settle.

Legal Analysis of Anti-Parent Amendment

Excerpts from National Review op-ed by

Carrie Campbell Severino and Frank J. Scaturro


LINK: Ohio’s Disastrous Abortion Ballot Proposal

  1. “The proposed amendment would outlaw virtually any restrictions on abortion and all other procedures, including sex-change surgeries, that touch on reproduction, for both adults and minors. It would cancel out not only parental-consent laws but also mere parental notification for minors’ abortions or sex-change surgeries; strike down health protections for people of all ages who undergo these procedures, including requirements that a qualified physician perform them; and erase any meaningful limits on late-term abortions.”

  1. “The Ohio proposal is so broadly worded that it would prevent the legislature not only from requiring the consent of parents before their child pursues a particular procedure, but also from requiring mere notification of parents — well short of the power to veto their child’s decision — before the procedure takes place.”
  2.  “That the proposal’s language is unconstrained should be no surprise. Its drafters want it that way. The coalition promoting it includes groups like the ACLU that have taken extreme positions not only on abortion, but also on a wide range of culture-war issues. And beneath it all is an overarching hostility to parents who would disagree.”

  1. “Beyond abortion, the text of the proposed amendment provides more broadly that ‘every individual has a right to make and carry out one’s own reproductive decisions, including but not limited to’ several categories: contraception, fertility treatment, continuing one’s own pregnancy, miscarriage care, and abortion. ‘Reproductive decisions,’ however, is a very broad term. By explicitly defining such decisions as ‘not limited to’ the enumerated categories, the proposal establishes its scope as sweeping.A natural reading would extend to any medical procedure that involves the human reproductive system, including sex-change surgery.”

  1. “The language also applies to individuals without any age qualification, so the proposal makes no distinction between adults and minors.”

  1.  “It appears that the amendment, if approved, would even offer a level of protection to nonphysicians in their performance of covered procedures — whether abortion, sex-change surgery, or something else. After all, the language extends to any “person or entity” who provides assistance with the procedure at issue.”

  1. “Complete strangers who assist children in obtaining life-altering procedures would find themselves on the right side of the law, while parents who try to protect their children would be deemed to have run afoul of the law.”

Parental Consent Legal Questions

We already know the left – and the media – will argue the amendment does not eliminate parental consent. Our parental consent message is on irrefutable legal footing. In addition to the National Review piece, here are useful legal precedents.

The proposed anti-parent amendment says the state “shall not” “burden” or “interfere” with any “reproductive decisions.”