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Ohio groups voice opinion on possible Roe v. Wade overturn

For the last 50 years, Roe v. Wade has been at the forefront of the timeless back-and-forth on abortion.

COLUMBUS, Ohio — For the last 50 years, Roe v. Wade has been at the forefront of the timeless back-and-forth on abortion. With the news of a possible Supreme Court overturn the debate continues in Ohio.

“We’re cautiously optimistic that, indeed, this is going to happen,” Ohio Right to Life President Mike Gonidakis said.

“It doesn’t diminish what a gut-punch it is,” Pro-Choice Ohio Executive Director, Kellie Copeland said.

Copeland thinks if Roe v. Wade was overturned it would only fuel the struggle for those who barely make ends meet or those with barriers to healthcare.

“We will not abandon this fight no matter what comes,” she said. “If you have had an abortion or if you provide an abortion or you fought to keep abortion accessible, our message is that we will never stop fighting shoulder-to-shoulder with you.”

Gonidakis says a Supreme Court overturn would not necessarily ban the practice of abortion.

“Overturning Roe v. Wade does not make abortion illegal,” he said. “It allows each state to set their own policies.”

He says this was considered the ultimate goal during Donald Trump’s presidency. Appointing Justices Gorsuch, Kavanaugh and Barrett to the Supreme Court gave the majority to pro-life republicans. But, by giving the power back to states, Gonidakis says it’s a win for Ohio allowing 11.9 million people to have a say.

“They’re giving the power back to the people,” he said. “They’re giving the power back to Ohioans and the residents of other states, too, to make their own decisions. They’re not telling them how to live. They’re not telling them which way to go on this. They’re saying it’s up to you.”

Copeland worries by giving the decision to states, abortion would become illegal in half the country. She calls that life-changing, devastating, sobering and frightening, leading to a potential downfall for Ohioans and healthcare.

“That means getting child care, getting time off of work, having to travel hundreds of miles to get care,” she said. “Those barriers could be insurmountable for many people.”

Gonidakis points to Medicaid expansion saying Ohio has the best social and safety nets for all Ohioans from housing and food assistance to help for mothers with health and pregnancy centers and receiving help for newborns. He says it’s something Ohio Right to Life will continue to fight for.

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