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Ohio Ballot Board Approves Language For Proposed "Personhood" Amendment

Yesterday, the Ohio Ballot Board (OBB) approved ballot language for the proposed "personhood" amendment, finding that the amendment should be considered by voters as a single amendment to the Ohio Constitution. Opponents of the proposed amendment have challenged the measure on grounds that it should be divided into two issues because it seeks to change two parts of the constitution and that it fails to provide exception for abortions where the woman's life is at risk or for victims of rape and incest.

The proposed amendment would change the Ohio Constitution to declare that life begins when a human egg is fertilized. Last November, voters in Mississippi rejected a similar proposal in a 58-42 vote, and another similar amendment lost twice in Colorado in 2008 and 2010.

The OBB's approval will allow petitioners to begin to gather the necessary 385,245 signatures of registered Ohio voters, which must be collected from at least 44 of Ohio's 88 counties, needed to qualify the issue for the November ballot.

If you have questions regarding the "personhood" amendment or Ohio's other laws, contact the attorneys at DiCaudo, Pitchford & Yoder today.

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