Returning Republican lawmakers at the statehouse on Wednesday were greeted with a pro-choice rally, although pro-life activists call it just political theater.
"Women aren't going to put up with this," said Stephanie Donovan. "We've already fought this fight, and we don't want to fight it again."
Over a dozen women's rights groups were at the statehouse protesting continued anti-abortion laws being backed by GOP lawmakers and signed by Gov. John Kasich.
"They didn't get elected to do this," said Eleanor Smeal, president of the Feminist Majority Foundation. "They got elected to help us out of a recession, and I think the public has had it."
Smeal is no stranger to the feminist movement. Her involvement dates back to the early 1970s.
She flew in from Washington for the rally, with an eye on next year’s election.
"Look at what's happened to Ohio," said Smeal. "I can't believe that they would pass laws that would endanger women's health. That they would cut back and not prioritize family planning. This is really injuring women and it has to stop."
Smeal says pro-choice grounds are organizing to have an impact in state elections like Ohio next year.
While the rally size was impressive outside, the opposition says it's the numbers inside that count.
"The voters of Ohio elected overwhelming numbers of men and women in the general assembly and a pro-life governor," said Mike Gonidakis, the president of Ohio Right to Life.
Gonidakis says until the numbers change, pro-life activists will be in the driver’s seat at the statehouse.
"A rally does nothing; it's just political theater, good for a newsletter. It doesn't move the needle," said Gonidakis.
But pro-choice activists say they'll keep pushing.
"If we don't have the right to choose, we don't have human rights," said Lupe Williams. "In my eye, Kasich is crazy."
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