If you are Ohio Governor John Kasich there is really only one question to ask yourself. Is it all worth it?
Is the warped and outdated disdain that Kasich and individuals of his ilk have for a woman being able to make medical decisions with the truthful help of her doctor worth him possibly getting kicked out of his job in 2014? Is the damage wrought by the pen he used to sign an over the top budget that basically puts abortion in the state of Ohio on the brink of extinction worth keeping his state blue for Democrats as far as Presidential elections are concerned?
On Sunday night Kasich signed into law “House Bill 59.” In addition to having $2.7 billion in tax cuts for the rich, which is another subject for another column entirely, Kasich and his GOP brethren managed to get into the bill asinine abortion laws like the defunding of Planned Parenthood to the tune of $1.4 million possibly bringing about the closing of three abortion clinics in the state.
There is also the outright intimidation of rape crisis centers. Yes Kasich and the boys have resorted to the worst elements of organized crime by telling these crisis centers that if they are caught counseling sexual assault victims about abortion in anyway they will lose their public funding. So if you are a woman who just survived the most horrible and traumatic event anyone could ever experience you will only be given some of the information you need from the people who are helping you cope all because middle aged, elected white men think that they know what is best for you.
Not surprisingly the bill does support “crisis pregnancy centers” which are usually run by churches and certainly do not discuss abortion as an option.
Stephanie Kight, the President of Planned Parenthood of Greater Ohio said “These provisions in the Ohio state budget are part of an orchestrated effort to roll back women’s rights and access to health care in Ohio. The budget is only the latest in a series of restrictive laws that have hurt the women in our state who need more access to health care not less.”
First of all the GOP’s stance on women’s reproductive rights both nationally and locally is a head-scratcher if I ever saw one. These are the people who will tell you that every life is important and that no pregnancy should be terminated, yet once a pregnancy is complete and a child’s existence becomes a reality the same individuals have no problem with depriving that child of food, a quality education, top notch healthcare and a living work wage for their parents. The whole “Sex is bad” mindset that leads to young people not being schooled on the virtures of birth control drives this entire way of thinking.
As much as I disagree with Kasich and conservatives across the country on this issue, you have to give Ohio Republicans credit for being willing to die on this particular hill. Kasich and company weren’t in some hermetically sealed room all of last year unaware of geniuses like Todd Akin and Richard Mourdock, and there comments on “legitimate rape” that would have the most unapologetic misogynists blush. The party’s standard bearer Mitt Romney was fervent in his desire to overturn Roe v. Wade and it got home a first class trip back to one of the many personal homes he owns and not the one on 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
Despite the warning signs of being on the wrong side of this issue Republicans in state houses and GOP Governors have proceeded with trying to kill abortion in their states and Kasich is included. The Governor’s problem is Ohio was reliably blue for Barack Obama in 2008 and 2012 and now with heightened scrutiny on what Republicans have done since winning the House of Representatives in 2010 and gerrymandering the process to win seats in State legislatures across the country Democrats will surely counter with a massive get out the vote campaign for 2014. Guess who happens to be one of the GOP politicians up for re-election in that calendar year. Was it worth it will definitely be the question Kasich and other Republican politicians will be asking themselves, You just wonder where they will be asking it from.