This morning I reported on a last-minute amendment to Ohio’s budget that had some strange new language I hadn’t seen. In my post-Texas pre-coffee haze, I reported that it requires an ultrasound before abortion. I was wrong and I apologize.

It requires an ultrasound and 24-hour wait before birth control.

Buckle up, because we’re going through the looking glass.

“Pregnancy” in the context of the informed-consent requirements now means “any fertilized egg”.

Abortion is undefined, but presumably it’s construed to mean “the termination of a pregnancy”.

The FDA claims that hormonal birth control reduces the likelihood of egg implantation. This is vanishingly unlikely–hormonal birth control prevents ovulation to begin with–but that’s not what’s important.

What’s important is that the Crisis Pregnancy Centers all think that’s how birth control works. Recall that they don’t understand how pregnancy works in general.

So, the provision in the budget requires an ultrasound, some lies about cancer, and some ads for CPCs before an abortion.

But “the disruption of implantation of a fertilized egg” now counts as an abortion. Prescribing birth control is, in Ohio, a ticking time-abortion.

Meaning, an anti-choice activist can go to Planned Parenthood and get an IUD. She can wait until she has spotting or sheds some of her uterine lining, then claim that it was an abortion caused by her IUD, and Planned Parenthood tricked her into getting an abortion, paid for by Obamacare.

Where does she turn? Why, the state medical board, where Kasich appointee and Ohio Right to Life president Mike Gonidakis will welcome her with open arms.

She faces no punishment because the budget now adds:

A pregnant woman on whom an abortion is performed or induced in violation of section 2919.191 or 2919.192 of the Revised Code is not guilty of violating any of those sections; is not guilty of attempting to commit, conspiring to commit, or complicity in committing a violation of any of those sections; and is not subject to a civil penalty based on the abortion being performed or induced in violation of any of those sections.

That is new language added to the bill. Note the moral impunity that it embues.

Gonidakis does believe that IUDs (and the pill, and NuvaRing) cause abortions. No time to find a link, but just ask him.

Gonidakis will accuse Planned Parenthood of “(5) Making a false, fraudulent, deceptive, or misleading statement in the solicitation of or advertising for patients” and bring them before the full board.

This won’t go far, but it’ll serve ORTL’s purposes of:

  • get headlines like “Planned Parenthood faces charges”
  • spread the gospel that The Pill Kills!
  • act persecuted when the rest of the medical board tosses the proceedings

This is parallel to Toledo’s transfer agreement situation (which, mind you, worked) and there’s no other reason to add this new language. Just like in 2011, this is confusing language that’s inserted without debate which quietly empowers the state medical board to take bizarre and unprecedented actions.

And they’re going to pass it tomorrow.

UPDATE: Here’s the bill in pdf. 130HB59-CC4263X2

Underline is the new language, strikethrough is the language cut.

UPDATE 2: I’ve clarified how the “birth control-ultrasound” language works in a separate post.

  • Think.

    Wear red to a rally on the Statehouse lawn today (6/27) at 10am. Tell extreme Republican legislators that THREATS TO WOMEN’S HEALTH DO NOT BELONG IN THE OHIO STATE BUDGET. Period.

  • Stephanie Eaton Agosta

    Kasich will line item veto, he isn’t that stupid.

  • MsJoanne

    I can’t find this amendment. Do you have a link? I read the bill and am bloging about it, but I cannot locate anything like you state. Help.

  • BillStewart2012

    While the bill is appalling, you actually don’t understand how hormonal birth control works, probably because you weren’t using it in the 70s and 80s while the formulations were changing a lot.

    It’s a tradeoff between preventing ovulation and preventing implantation – doing all of one or all of the other requires really high doses with more serious side effects, but doing a balanced approach prevents most but not all ovulation and prevents ovulation as a backup. Getting to “vanishingly unlikely” doesn’t happen in modern formulations.

    If you believe that life begins at conception (sounds like you don’t), then preventing implantation does end that human life, but it’s not ending a pregnancy, because the mother isn’t pregnant until implantation. That may help deal with the bill’s effects on birth control.

  • I hope that the women of Ohio are taking notes on the GOPers. Where is their concern about big government when they are so concerned about vaginas? Why not propose a bill that men have to have two rectal exams in order to get medication for erectile dysfunction? The results of those exams would have to be posted on the internet. It would only apply to Republicans.

  • Lotus09

    I never underestimate the attraction of “stupid” for the GOP.

  • BelleStarr

    Republicans is what’s wrong.

  • BelleStarr

    Took the words out of my mouth.

  • radicalhw

    WHY in the name of all that is holy does every news article these days sound like it should come from the goddamn Onion??!

  • nousernamesavailable

    FYI: The IUD Merina is having serious side effects and a woman can get pregnant and miscarry while it is inserted, also my daughter had several severe, bacteria infections caused by Merina that could have ultimately caused sterilization, they finally removed it because it had shifted in the uterus and when they removed it, it had changed color.
    She is going for the implant in July, but this was a doctor recommended form of birth control.
    Dude needs to study upon birth control methods and their side effects.
    Good Luck Ohio Women.

  • Robyn Kern

    inbreeding I believe…..

  • Luke Brockmeier

    I have it in PDF. Let me figure out how to add it…

    Any tips from WordPress users would be appreciated.

  • Luke Brockmeier

    That was as simple as I had hoped! Let me know if there are any problems. Almost everything that I cited is new text (easy to spot).

  • Margot

    I’ve read through the bill you uploaded, and I could not find where it states women must get an ultrasound before obtaining birth control- but must before an abortion! So, where did you get the “birth control” from?

  • Stina Ry

    You NEED to post the exact language from the bill that you seem to think requires a pre birth control ultra sound. Because you seem to be the only person who seems to think such language exists.

  • Bailey

    I also cannot find the language you are referring to… What page/line is it on?

  • Kit McGee

    I am sorry your daughter had such issues. That is not common. IUDs are safe and very effective overall, but, like ALL birth control, there is a rate of failure with them and some women’s bodies do not handle the insertion well.

  • Kathryn

    Do you really think so? I so hope you are right and that he has not drunk the Rick Perry kool-aid. Who ARE these people who claim listening to phone calls invades their privacy but crawling up into a woman’s vagina doesn’t??

  • Couldn’t find it either. I’m not the best at reading. Point us in the right direction.

  • herasmus_b_dragon

    OK, after reading the 38 page document, this guy MIGHT be stretching his interpretation a bit, but on the other hand, it’s easy to see how the pro-birthers would as well. The added text defines a pregnancy as ANY FERTILIZED EGG, not an egg implanted in the uterus. Since some birth control prevents implantation, it could be argued that The Pill causes abortions. Certainly my IUD would fall under that category since it’s one of the three methods in which it works.

    Since the definition of the word “abortion” is the deliberate ending of a pregnancy, and pregnancy is now defined in Ohio law as the moment of fertilization (added text, Page 9 section G), birth control being given before a doctor has determined (externally only) whether or not there’s a fetal heartbeat can be met with criminal penalties (Page 11, section E). It’s ambiguous enough that they could make it stick.

  • Peggy Ullman Bell

    When will some genius lab rat [probably female] find a way to temporarily sterilize all 10 yr old males? The antidote could be provided to their legal wife upon the husband’s 30th birthday.

  • Luke Brockmeier

    The person who can bring charges is the head of Ohio Right to Life.

    I don’t think they’ll successfully charge the doctor, but I think they’ll generate enough negative press to severely damage family planning providers.

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