COLUMBUS, Ohio — Editor's note: the video in the player above is from a previous story.
On Friday, the Supreme Court announced that it has overturned Roe v. Wade, the nearly 50-year legal precedent guaranteeing the right of legal abortion in the U.S.
Politicians across Ohio have been quick to react to the ruling, which will allow states to ban abortions. This story will be updated with additional reactions throughout the day.
Cleveland City Council President Blaine Griffin
"This self-righteous decision made by activist judges and supported by many elected and appointed officials has no merit.
"Many of these same people who want to take away a women’s choice offer little to no government support or assistance once a child is born and then fervently support extreme incarceration and capital punishment. Once you’re born, you’re on your own. This is nothing short of hypocrisy.
"I represent many poor, women of color who are single parents of households. They will be disproportionately impacted by this decision. The only women’s health clinic in the city of Cleveland is in Ward 6 in the Buckeye/Shaker & Woodland Hills community because there is a need to have comprehensive women’s health for my beloved community.
"Today, I speak for them and their choice to make decisions on their own bodies.
"Now we have to register, vote and show up at the polls to defend a women’s right to choose what happens with her own body - not allow government or activist judges that control."
Cleveland Mayor Justin Bibb
"Today, the Supreme Court took another extreme and radical step to move America backwards by overturning Roe v. Wade – and they won’t stop there.
"This is a ruthless attack on women, particularly low-income women and families who can’t afford healthcare and an affront to all who came before us, who fought long and hard for reproductive rights over 50 years ago.
"This is not just a dark moment in our country, this is a movement to rewrite history and take away freedoms enshrined in law for decades.
"Women’s reproductive rights are under siege, and I am determined to mobilize every resource and legal mechanism within my power to protect women's safety, health, and right to choose."
Cuyahoga County Executive Armond Budish
"This is a sad day for America, and a devastating day for women. The Supreme Court’s ruling eliminates a woman’s constitutional protection to make her own medical decision. We are exploring how to support organizations that provide health care and related services to women in Cuyahoga County.”"
Former Dayton Mayor and Ohio Democratic gubernatorial nominee Nan Whaley
"This is no longer a hypothetical. Unfortunately for women in Ohio, the Court’s decision to strike down Roe means that Governor DeWine will move to criminalize abortion. That means women in Ohio will have the right to a safe and legal abortion taken away from them, even if their life is at risk or if they’ve been the victim of rape or incest. It’s exactly what Mike DeWine and the extremists in the Ohio Legislature want, and that’s unacceptable.
"This election has never been more important. If DeWine is reelected, he’ll take Ohio women back to a time where abortion was criminalized and dangerous. The right to access a safe and legal abortion and reproductive care is on the ballot this November. Ohioans have an opportunity to elect a pro-choice governor who won’t interfere with a woman’s right to make decisions about her own body."
Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost
"This decision returns abortion policy to the place it has always belonged: to the elected policy branches of government. Roe was poorly reasoned, a doctrine of shifting sands that invited perpetual litigation.
"We will continue to debate this issue. But passion is not a license to violence. I call again on my federal colleague, Attorney General Merrick Garland, and my fellow states’ attorneys general to publicly commit to holding violent protesters accountable under the law, no matter which side they are on."
Ohio Lt. Gov. Jon Husted
"As we transition as a nation from Roe to Dobbs, we all need to do our best to understand and respect the heartfelt, genuine differences of opinions among our families, friends, neighbors and communities. Being an adoptee who started life in a foster home, my own experience helped shape my views on this issue. I’m here today because my birth mother chose life and put me up for adoption, which I know could not have been an easy decision for her. My prayer for all of us is this collective experience will build a more compassionate nation that values life."
U.S. Rep. and Democratic U.S. Senate nominee Tim Ryan
"Today’s disastrous decision is the largest case of government overreach in my lifetime. By overturning Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court is gutting a long-established right in order to put politicians between women and their doctors. Even worse, this ruling gives the green light to those here in Ohio who have introduced legislation that would deny women access to potentially lifesaving care, and threaten to put women and doctors in jail.
"We saw this coming, which is why as a member of Congress I’ve voted repeatedly to pass the Women’s Health Protection Act, only to watch it die in the Senate along with so many other bills that would protect health care and help women and families. It’s clear the Senate is not working the way it’s supposed to and Ohio women will pay the price. It has never been more important that we expand our pro-choice majority, end the filibuster, and pass legislation to protect the fundamental right to an abortion."
Republican U.S. Senate nominee JD Vance
"I am 37 years old, and for my entire life abortion on demand—decreed by an unelected panel of judges—has been forced on the nation. Today is a great day. It vindicates a half century of work, and gives us an opportunity to live up our founding creed—that all of us are truly created equal.
"We now enter a new phase of the pro-life movement. We will continue the fight to ensure that every young mother has the resources they need to bring new life into the world. We will build an economy where it's possible to sustain and support our children. We will expand adoption and promote pregnancy centers, so that every child has the loving home they deserve. Some of our efforts will be federal, and others local, but all will be focused on the simple principle that life is worth protecting—from the moment it begins until its natural end.
"In the Hebrew Bible, God tells Jeremiah: "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet of nations." This wisdom echoes through the ages in our hearts and in our minds; now it falls to us to ensure it is reflected in the laws of our nation."
Ohio Democratic Party Chair Elizabeth Walters
"Ohioans’ fundamental right to reproductive care, including abortion and birth control, is on the line in this year’s election. This disastrous decision lays squarely at the feet of Ohio Republicans - from J.D. Vance to Mike DeWine to extremists in the statehouse - who have spent years working to strip women of their basic rights and enacting new, cruel restrictions that would punish survivors of rape and incest.
"It is critical that Ohioans elect Tim Ryan, Nan Whaley and pro-choice Democratic candidates up and down the ballot in November who will protect the right to abortion. We will continue to fight so that women can make these personal decisions with their doctors and without unwanted and unnecessary interference from politicians. This November, Ohioans will take their outrage to the polls and defeat the extremist Republicans who gutted our freedom to choose.”
Ohio Republican Party Chairman Bob Paduchik
"A grave injustice of judicial activism has been overturned, and the right to govern is restored to the people of Ohio. This is a historic day for all Americans who worked for decades to defend unborn children."
U.S. Rep. Bob Latta
"Today, we celebrate life and all of those who are committed to protecting and defending the most innocent among us – the unborn." The Supreme Court’s decision overturns the wrongly-decided Roe v. Wade case, which has led to the loss of tens of millions of lives. This decision rightly returns the power to protect the unborn to the states and to the voice of the people. It’s a momentous day for innocent life and one that should be celebrated. It’s never been more important to stand up for life and be a voice for the voiceless.”"
U.S. Rep. David Joyce
"As someone who spent over 25 years practicing law, I always believed Roe v. Wade was a stretch of legal theory. The Constitution does not confer the right to abortion. It does, however, provide states with the power to regulate the practice as they see fit. Today’s Supreme Court decision is a long overdue victory for states’ rights and the sanctity of life. The power to protect the unborn has been rightfully returned to the people and those they elect to represent them."
U.S. Rep. Marcy Kaptur
"There are no more personal decisions than those that are made within the domain of the family. Such decisions should be guided by individual belief – not by the beliefs of unrelated strangers. For some, bearing children involves no medical crisis or difficult circumstance. But that is not the case for all. The overturning of Roe v. Wade means that the rights of every woman – including those who have been sexually assaulted or whose lives are threatened – are no longer theirs. Instead, these rights are now held by the Supreme Court and state legislatures. Every woman and family should be able to retain the freedom to make these decisions of conscience. The Supreme Court’s ruling eviscerates that essential freedom."
U.S. Rep. Shontel Brown
"Today is a dark day in American history. The Supreme Court’s devastating decision overturning Roe v. Wade is a deliberate attack on reproductive rights and an individual’s fundamental right to make decisions about their body and their health care. Now, the most personal decision someone can make will be subjected to the impulses of politicians and partisans. For the first time in our history, girls growing up today will not have the same rights as their mothers. And there is no doubt that this disgraceful decision will take the greatest toll on poor women, women of color, and marginalized communities who already face systemic barriers to accessing to health care.
"Today, the Supreme Court not only delivered a smack in the face to five decades of precedent, it also turned back the clock on decades of progress on human rights. This decision is a blow not just to women, but to all of us who cherish the freedoms and rights we hold as Americans. Combined with yesterday’s ruling on guns, this decision displays the Court’s glaring hypocrisy for the country to see. According to the Court, states cannot decide how to regulate guns—yet only the states can decide how to regulate a woman’s body. They will stop at nothing to foist their extreme agenda on the American people.
"My heart is heavy today. Yet let’s be disappointed, not devastated. We can be down, but we aren’t out. The House has already passed legislation to make Roe v. Wade the law of the land, and I urge the Senate to pass this critical bill now. We cannot—and we will not—go back."
U.S. Rep. Bill Johnson
"Today marks a landmark and historic decision by the U.S. Supreme Court in favor of life. It’s a great day!
"After oral arguments concluded last December, it was fairly clear that several justices had significant concerns with the legal foundations Roe and Casey rested on.
"But now, finally, 2022 is the year that the extraordinarily divisive issue of abortion is removed from the unelected federal judiciary and returned to the citizens of each state to decide for themselves through their state legislatures. And that’s as it should be.
"I hope Ohio now follows suit with a similar law to the one enacted and upheld in Mississippi. Liberal states, like California and New York, will likely vote to become hubs for abortion. And while I would vehemently disagree with their decision, it would be up to the voters in those states. And that’s the point: today’s Supreme Court decision, authored by Justice Alito, rightfully allows states to make their own decisions; it does not ban abortion. But today marks an important return to the federalism on which our Constitution is based.
"Today is unquestionably a huge win for the pro-life community. Those who’ve worked so hard for nearly five decades fighting to recognize and protect the life of the unborn - the most vulnerable and innocent among us - have reason to rejoice. However, pro-life Americans must continue to stand up and speak out for the sanctity of life.
"President Trump understood that, and it’s why his administration worked so hard to implement policies to defend the unborn, and appointed countless pro-life district and circuit court judges and three Supreme Court justices who decide cases according to the Constitution and not political passions. Without President Trump and Senate Republicans standing strong on federal court confirmations, today’s landmark ruling simply wouldn't have happened.
"Finally, today’s ruling highlights the courage of several justices who refused to be intimidated by threats of violence and daily protests at their homes. They should be commended for putting the integrity of the Constitution above their own comfort and safety."
U.S. Rep. Jim Jordan
Ohio Women's Alliance Action Fund Co-Founder and Co-Executive Director Rhiannon Carnes.
"We are devastated, but we are not broken because we know Roe vs. Wade has improved the lives of many. Many have fought hard and dedicated their lives over the last 50 years to ensure bodily protection for people who have the right to legal abortion. From holding power to decide when we want to start a family, to financial and economic security, to equal representation for women in career advancement, Roe vs. Wade was a layer of security that we won't give up to an extremist conservative bench on Capitol Hill.
"Our in-state strategy ensures that we protect the Ohio Supreme Court, which has been a backstop for securing reproductive justice. OWA AF is already working with our members and partners to ensure that every Ohioan has the resources to obtain a legal abortion in the wake of this unjust, unconscionable ruling. We are all coming together to build independent political power against those stigmatizing abortion and forcing their political objective on our lives and bodies. And we will continue to fight like hell to maintain the right to abortion in our state and across the nation."
State Rep. and Democratic nominee for Ohio Attorney General Jeff Crossman
"This decision threatens freedom itself and it’s astonishing that conservative activist judges on the U.S. Supreme Court chose to legislate and overturn a five decade old precedent that upheld a fundamental right everyone has come to rely upon. All Americans should be permitted the right to consult with their own families, their religious leaders, and their individual conscience free from interference from the government, especially on something as private and as personal as reproductive health.
"I trust people to make the decisions that are best for their families and their personal health. Unfortunately, the Supreme Court decision today robs individuals of that right and now forces an extremist Ohio legislature between patients and doctors, between clergy and the faithful, and between families and difficult decisions. As Ohio’s next Attorney General, I intend to uphold individual rights and protect Ohioans from the extreme legislation that will now likely come as a result of this decision, including such things as criminalizing health care decisions and miscarriages, the abolishment of same-sex marriage, and government privacy intrusions which we have only begun to conceive.
"Ohio deserves an Attorney General, who will champion the individual right to reproductive freedom. On days like today, I am proud to continue this fight alongside the strong women in my life who recognize the significance of this decision and how this threatens the future of our state. While extremists may welcome this ruling, I welcome the renewed energy that this fight for fundamental rights will bring to our state and nation."
State Senate Minority Leader Kenny Yuko
"We feared this day would come. It is enraging to know that conservative judicial activists have taken away a right that American women have had for half a century. In Ohio, women will lose the ability to decide if and when they want to have children, even when they are victims of rape or incest. Members of the Court have already signaled that other rights, including same sex-marriage and birth control, could be next. I’ll never give up fighting for women’s right to choose or stop defending all other fundamental rights held by Americans."
State Sen. Kristina Roegner
"This is a historic day for our nation, one that is long overdue. The highest court in the land has reaffirmed our belief in the sanctity of life - that every life is precious and deserving of dignity and respect. Our country was established with the intent for every individual to enjoy the right to life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness. Today the U.S.Supreme Court has upheld the right to life for untold generations of future Americans.
"This ruling does not outlaw abortion but rather returns this decision to the states- where it belongs. Some states will choose to continue to permit abortion. Others will not. I am thankful that Ohio is a pro-life state.
"Now more than ever it is important that we ensure pregnant women and families have the support they need as well as streamline the adoption process.
"I have fought long and hard for the pro-life movement, so I am particularly gratified by this historic decision restoring the right to life. Today’s ruling deepens my faith in this nation - today justice was done."
State Sen. Nickie Antonio
"Access to comprehensive healthcare includes all forms of reproductive care, including contraception and abortion care. This decision not only erodes women’s rights, but also jeopardizes the health and wellbeing of Ohio families. That is why my colleagues and I have introduced Senate Joint Resolution 7, an amendment to enshrine reproductive rights in the Ohio Constitution by guaranteeing access to contraception and abortion care. It is egregious for the government to insert itself into the personal, private decisions of Ohio families."
U.S. Sen. Rob Portman
"Today’s ruling is consistent with my view that policy questions regarding abortion should be decided by the elected representatives of the people, not the Supreme Court. Through its ruling today, the Court made this clear. The states already play a significant role in abortion policy, but have been constrained by various Supreme Court rulings. Now the issue of abortion will be decided by the states and the elected representatives closest to the people.
"While abortion is a very sensitive and emotional issue with strong feelings on both sides, I think most Americans agree that human life is precious and should be protected wherever possible. To that end, we should do more to work together in a bipartisan manner to promote adoption, reduce the number of abortions, and provide support for pregnant women in difficult circumstances."
U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown
"For fifty years, women in America had the right to make their own personal health care decisions. Today, five judges handed that right over to politicians. This will be the first generation of women to grow up with fewer rights and freedoms than their mothers and grandmothers, and this burden will be disproportionately carried by low-income women and women of color. This is a radical decision by an increasingly out-of-touch court, and Americans won’t stand for it. When, how, and whether to have a family is one of the most personal and meaningful decisions we make in life, and the freedom to make those decisions for yourself, free from political interference, should be available to everyone. The president and Congress must take action restoring protections for women to make their own health choices, and women will make their voices heard in voting booths around Ohio and the country this November."
Bishop Edward Malesic, Catholic Diocese of Cleveland
"Science confirms that the human life of an individual begins at conception and our experience tells us that all human life is precious, fragile and given directly to us as a gift from God. We are brothers and sisters in our human family, made in the image and likeness of God. We are all called to live out our responsibility to protect and care for one another, whether born or unborn.
"I wholeheartedly applaud today’s decision by the U.S. Supreme Court which reverses the grave injustice of 1973, when Roe v. Wade decided that a whole class of human beings, the preborn, are outside the protection of the law and had no constitutional right to life. Since that decision, more than 60 million innocent lives have been sadly ended. Now that Roe is overturned, states will again be able to protect the lives of preborn children and in doing so, also protect millions of women from the tragic consequences of abortion.
"The consistent teaching of the Church regarding the intrinsic evil of abortion seeks to secure all other rights as well. We are not a “single issue” Church; there are other extremely important rights that we must defend, to be sure; but these additional rights flow from and are rooted in the fundamental right to life itself.
"Now that the bane of Roe has been addressed, we must ensure that the rights of parents and their children are protected so that they may have what they need to prosper with dignity and hope. The Church is redoubling efforts to accompany women and couples who are facing unexpected or difficult pregnancies, offering them loving and compassionate care. The Diocese of Cleveland has developed many ministries to serve expectant mothers who face difficult pregnancies and those who find it difficult to care for their children after they are born. Pregnant women can find help at local pregnancy centers, where they can get information about the pregnancy, undergo an ultrasound and receive assistance during their pregnancy. After birth, there are many resources available from nonprofit groups like the Christ Child Society, Catholic Charities, Diocese of Cleveland and others that can supply infant necessities like layettes, diapers, formula, cribs, strollers and more, as well as follow-up medical and mental health assistance for the mother and baby. And as the baby grows, other agencies like Help Me Grow offer additional assistance, including educational resources. Catholic Charities offers foster care and adoption services, as well. Another rapidly growing initiative is “Walking with Moms in Need,” sponsored by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. This parish-based process helps parishioners connect with local mothers facing difficult or challenging pregnancies, identifying local resources and filling the gaps so that pregnant and parenting women receive the material, spiritual, and emotional support they need.
"People of faith also offer compassionate care for those women and men who have been affected by a procured abortion in the past. We offer God’s consistent mercy and reconciliation, especially through the Bethesda House of Mercy as well as programs such as Project Rachel and Rachel’s Vineyard, whose ministries offer compassionate accompaniment and healing support.
"I know that there are those who will disagree with today’s ruling by the court. I pray for their conversion of heart because this decision is a major step forward in protecting all human life. As people of faith, we must be prepared to be patient with those who will continue to oppose us on this preeminent life issue. In all things, we will continue to proclaim the truth with charity. Let us pray together that God grant us the courage and wisdom to protect the gift of human life from conception to natural death and respect the lives of our brothers and sisters both born and yet to be born with great love. May our faithful witness soften the hearts and minds of those who reject the gift of life in any way. This we pray through Christ, our risen Lord."
"Like other healthcare systems, we are carefully reviewing the recent Supreme Court decision on Roe v. Wade and working to understand the full impact it will have on our patients and healthcare providers."
"We are reviewing the ruling and any related future Ohio legislation for potential impacts on our health systems and patients."
Planned Parenthood of Greater Ohio
"Today’s decision is as dangerous as it is shocking, but know that Planned Parenthood stands with you,” said Iris Harvey, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Greater Ohio. “Anti-abortion politicians have plotted across all levels of government to take away our rights and control our bodies, from the U.S. Supreme Court to the Ohio state legislature. Today, abortion is still legal in the state of Ohio. We will continue to fight with and for you. Always."
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