Pulse on politics: Issue One

By Kendall Westgate, WestgateK@Findlay.edu

When driving around Findlay, one perhaps noticed many signs along the roads stating Vote “No” on Issue One or Vote “Yes” on Issue One, which proves the controversy about this topic around the state of Ohio. Many people in this country are waiting to see what precedent Ohio may set on the issue of reproductive rights.

Issue One is an amendment to the Ohio Constitution Article I, Section 22. The Right to Reproductive Freedom with Protections for Health and Safety. The amendment produces reproductive rights. The League of Women Voters of Ohio points out that the wording of the amendment is different from the summary on the Ohio ballot that voters will see. Secretary of State Frank LaRose approved the summary which uses the term “unborn child” four times though that term is not used in the actual amendment.

Since the United States Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade last year, individual states were given the opportunity to decide their own laws on this matter, which prompted this initiative, according to 10 WBNS.

University of Findlay junior Olivia Perry has been researching Issue One and what it means for Ohioans.

“Issue One is an amendment relating to abortion and other reproductive decisions,” Perry said. “Voting ‘yes’ would establish an individual’s rights to their own reproductive medical treatment in the Ohio Constitution. It would create legal protections for anyone that assists a person with obtaining reproductive medical treatment, like abortion. It would also prohibit the state from burdening, penalizing or banning abortion before a fetus is determined to be viable. The state would only be able to prohibit an abortion after a fetus is announced to be viable by the mother’s physician and the physician does not consider an abortion necessary to save the mother’s life or health. Issue One would allow a fetus to be aborted at any stage of pregnancy, regardless of viability, if the abortion is considered necessary to save the mother’s life or health.”

An Associated Press VoteCast poll last year stated that “59% of Ohio voters said abortion should generally be legal.” 

“I believe that Issue One is something that this state and every other state should consider having,” junior Olivia Perry said. “I am pro-choice and will always fight for women’s reproductive rights. Abortion should be legal in every state, giving women access to health care and safer means of getting rid of their pregnancies.”

Leading this campaign includes Ohioans for Reproductive Freedom, Ohio Physicians for Reproductive Rights and Ohioans United for Reproductive Rights, according to Ideastream Public Media. 

“I think Issue One is important to pass,” UF junior Zoe Wallace said. “It is not enforcing abortion, it is just maintaining the right to choose. I think maintaining the freedom of choice is crucial to upholding the values of this country.”

Polls close at 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 7.

“I feel that Issue One should be passed to protect women’s rights to their bodies,” Perry said. “If it is not passed, it would endanger lives: women who need abortions for health reasons, women who don’t have the means to raise or support a child in a safe and healthy environment, women who will do anything they can to get rid of their pregnancies.”