For Election Day on Tuesday, Ohio voters will weigh in on a citizen-initiated amendment on abortion.
If approved, the measure known as Issue 1 would make permanent in the Ohio Constitution a woman’s right to an abortion and reproductive healthcare.
How Ohioans will vote on the amendment will have broader implications as the abortion issue remains a key sticking point in the political slugfest between Democrats and Republicans in Washington. At the heart of the partisan divide is whether abortion should be legal and at what point during pregnancy it should be permissible.
A national Gallup poll conducted in May found a majority of Americans (69%) believe abortion rights should be legal in the first trimester. According to the poll, support for abortion declines for each trimester, with 37% in favor of the procedure during the second trimester and 22% during the third trimester.
Abortion rights advocates, who are pushing back against a wave of varying abortion bans in states controlled by Republicans, see the vote in the Buckeye State as a referendum on the broader fight for reproductive freedom.
“Our eyes are on Ohio,” said Alexis McGill Johnson, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood.
She told theGrio, “Unlike any other place we’ve seen so far, anti-abortion groups have invested big in misinforming Black Ohioans, in particular.”
Activist and political strategist Nina Turner believes that Ohio voters will favor abortion rights on Nov. 7 and that those votes will come from “voters across the political spectrum.”
The former Ohio state senator and Bernie Sanders presidential campaign surrogate said Issue 1 will emerge victorious due to a high early voting turnout.
“Ohioans are going to show right-wing Republicans that they are tired of their overreach on the reproductive rights of women,” Turner told theGrio.
McGill Johnson said surveys conducted by Planned Parenthood found that a majority of Ohioans believe “politicians have no business in their exam rooms and they deserve to make their own decisions for their health, families, and futures.”
Republican strategist Shermichael Singleton admits that since the GOP’s victory at overturning Roe v. Wade via the U.S. Supreme Court in 2022, “It’s the single issue [Republicans] continue to get beat on every single time.”
The Sirius XM host defined the party’s stance on abortion as “the literal definition of insanity.”
Karen Boykin-Towns, vice chair of the NAACP National Board of Directors, traveled to Dayton, Ohio, last week to speak about what’s at stake with Tuesday’s vote on Issue 1.
“The NAACP continues to stand with women and Black women who are disproportionately impacted by restrictive policies, believing a woman has a right to body autonomy,” Boykin-Towns told theGrio.
She said after the high court struck down Roe v. Wade, the board passed a resolution “reaffirming our support for a woman’s right to body autonomy” and “instructing our units to educate and advocate to protect the reproductive rights of women by codifying them in state law and within their state constitutions.”
Boykin-Towns, who is also the highest-ranking Black woman at the NAACP, said she “anxiously awaits the outcome of the election.”
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