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Ohio GOP: Men can keep raping their wives, but now they can force them to give birth as well! Seriously.

The tagline for ACASignups.net is "healthcare policy data, analysis & snark", so naturally many of my blog posts have tongue-in-cheek, sarcastic headlines.

This is not one of those times. The headline above is absolutely, sickeningly true.

On a couple of days ago, both houses of the Ohio state legislature--the House and Senate alike--voted to ban abortion outright six weeks after conception. There's no exception for rape. There's no exception for incest. There is an exception for the life of the mother (not her health, mind you...just her actual ability to keep breathing)...but that's it. Yesterday this bill was signed into law by GOP Governor Mike DeWine.

The six-week abortion ban known as the "heartbeat bill" is now law in Ohio. That makes Ohio the sixth state in the nation to attempt to outlaw abortions at the point a fetal heartbeat can be detected.

Gov. Mike DeWine signed the bill Thursday afternoon, just one day after it passed the Republican-led General Assembly. The law is slated to take effect in 90 days, unless blocked by a federal judge.

Now known as the "Human Rights Protection Act," SB 23 outlaws abortions as early as five or six weeks into a pregnancy, before many women know they're pregnant. It is one of the most restrictive abortion laws in the country.

The bill does include an exception to save the life of the woman, but no exceptions for cases of rape or incest.

...DeWine's signature will set off a lengthy legal fight. The ACLU of Ohio announced it will sue to stop the law, which the group says "virtually bans all abortion care."

"This legislation is blatantly unconstitutional and we will fight to the bitter end to ensure that this bill is permanently blocked," said ACLU of Ohio legal director Freda Levenson in a statement.

As horrific as this is already, it gets worse...far worse. You see,

During House session yesterday, @RepGalonski had an amendment to make it illegal to rape your wife. (It's legal in Ohio if she's drunk or incapacitated. Seriously.)

These are the 58 Republicans who rejected making spousal rape illegal: pic.twitter.com/GWM0h9Rdkq

— Gabriel Mann (@OhioGabe) April 12, 2019

I decided to look it up, and sure enough, if you take a look at pages 314 - 341 of the Ohio House Session Journal for Wednesday, April 10th, 2019, you'll see this section (actually starting on page 321), which deals with amendments to the "fetal heartbeat" bill:

Sec. 2907.02. (A)(1) No person shall engage in sexual conduct with another who is not the spouse of the offender or who is the spouse of the offender but is living separate and apart from the offender, when any of the following applies:

(a) For the purpose of preventing resistance, the offender substantially impairs the other person's judgment or control by administering any drug, intoxicant, or controlled substance to the other person surreptitiously or by force, threat of force, or deception.

(b) The other person is less than thirteen years of age, whether or not the offender knows the age of the other person.

(c) The other person's ability to resist or consent is substantially impaired because of a mental or physical condition or because of advanced age, and the offender knows or has reasonable cause to believe that the other person's ability to resist or consent is substantially impaired because of a mental or physical condition or because of advanced age.

Sec. 2907.03. (A) No person shall engage in sexual conduct with another, not the spouse of the offender, when any of the following apply:

(1) The offender knowingly coerces the other person to submit by any means that would prevent resistance by a person of ordinary resolution.

(2) The offender knows that the other person's ability to appraise the nature of or control the other person's own conduct is substantially impaired.

(3) The offender knows that the other person submits because the other person is unaware that the act is being committed.

(4) The offender knows that the other person submits because the other person mistakenly identifies the offender as the other person's spouse.

Sec. 2907.05. (A) No person shall have sexual contact with another, not the spouse of the offender; cause another, not the spouse of the offender, to have sexual contact with the offender; or cause two or more other persons to have sexual contact when any of the following applies:

(1) The offender purposely compels the other person, or one of the other persons, to submit by force or threat of force.

(2) For the purpose of preventing resistance, the offender substantially impairs the judgment or control of the other person or of one of the other persons by administering any drug, intoxicant, or controlled substance to the other person surreptitiously or by force, threat of force, or deception.

(3) The offender knows that the judgment or control of the other person or of one of the other persons is substantially impaired as a result of the influence of any drug or intoxicant administered to the other person with the other person's consent for the purpose of any kind of medical or dental examination, treatment, or surgery.

(4) The other person, or one of the other persons, is less than thirteen years of age, whether or not the offender knows the age of that person.

(5) The ability of the other person to resist or consent or the ability of one of the other persons to resist or consent is substantially impaired because of a mental or physical condition or because of advanced age, and the offender knows or has reasonable cause to believe that the ability to resist or consent of the other person or of one of the other persons is substantially impaired because of a mental or physical condition or because of advanced age.

...and so on and so forth. In all the "not the spouse of the offender" exception to rape is mentioned 25 times.

It's important to stress that it was ALREADY legal for men to rape their unconscious, drugged, drunk or mentally impaired wives in Ohio, because the world is a sick and repulsive place.

On Wednesday, the Ohio state legislature had an opportunity to at the very least correct this sickening and misogynistic legal exception at the same time they were imposing an equally misogynistic one...and yet, as noted by Gabriel Mann, here was the vote on tabling the amendment...which is to say, shooting the amendment down:

The question being, “Shall the motion to amend be agreed to?”

Representative Seitz moved that the motion be laid on the table.

The question being, "Shall the motion to amend be laid on the table?"

The yeas and nays were taken and resulted – yeas 58, nays 38, as follows:

Those who voted in the affirmative were: Representatives

Antani Arndt Baldridge Becker Blessing Brinkman Butler Callender Carfagna Carruthers Cross Cupp Dean DeVitis Edwards Ghanbari Ginter Green Greenspan Hambley Hillyer Holmes, A. Hood Hoops Jones Jordan Keller Kick Koehler Lanese Lang Lipps Manchester Manning, D. McClain Merrin Oelslager Perales Plummer Powell Reineke Richardson Riedel Roemer Romanchuk Ryan Schaffer Scherer Seitz Smith, R. Smith, T. Stein Stoltzfus Vitale Wiggam Wilkin Zeltwanger Householder-58

Those who voted in the negative were: Representatives

Boggs Boyd Brent Brown Cera Clites Crawley Crossman Denson Galonski Hicks-Hudson Holmes, G. Howse Ingram Kelly Kent LaTourette Leland Lepore-Hagan Lightbody Liston Manning, G. Miller, A. Miller, J. Miranda O'Brien Patterson Rogers Russo Sheehy Skindell Smith, K. Sobecki Strahorn Sweeney Sykes Upchurch West-38

The motion to amend was laid on the table.

Let me reiterate:

  • It was already legal in Ohio for men to rape their wife if she's drunk, drugged, unconscious or mentally incapacitated.
  • It's no illegal in Ohio for a woman to have an abortion after a fetal heartbeat is detected...which is often before she even knows she's pregnant.
  • This means that as of today, in Ohio, a married man can legally drug his wife, rape her and impregnate her...and if she doesn't happen to discover she's pregnant and have an abortion within the next six weeks, she's legally required to carry her rapist's fetus to term and give birth.

Most mind-boggling of all? Six of the Republicans who voted to keep allowing men to rape their wives are women.

Here's the full list of the 58 "Yes" votes, with their districts (two Republican women voted No, and it looks like one Republican man didn't vote at all):

I have nothing snarky to add to this.