To the Editor:
It is election time, and we are bombarded by campaign literature – yard signs, shiny mailers, telephone calls and campaign ads. How do we decide who is the most qualified candidate who aligns with our values and beliefs? I do my homework by reading and comparing candidate websites along with various voter guides. For already elected officials, I review their voting record. It’s easy to do by going to various websites, including votesmart.org.
For me, issues related to women’s reproductive rights and choices are very important. Our current Ohio representative, Jay Edwards, in November 2017 voted in support of anti-abortion legislation, House Bill 214, which was signed into Ohio law in 2018.
This bill prohibits a person from performing, inducing or attempting to perform an abortion on a pregnant woman who is seeking the abortion because a fetus has or may have Down Syndrome. There are no exceptions listed for a doctor to perform the abortion for the health and safety of the woman or if this situation was the result of a rape or incest. Additionally, this law includes reporting for any abortion to include specific personal information that is shared with the Department of Health. I encourage you to read the entire act H.B. 214.
In December 2017, I sent a text to Rep. Edwards to express my disappointment on his vote in support of HB 214. He replied by text, “I have always been pro- life. I ran off of that last time around and was elected.”
I reviewed his website and campaign literature but did not find his position on a woman’s right to choose addressed. I believe his position on this issue should be noted by voters.
The recent U.S. Supreme Court appointment struck fear in many of us regarding the safety of Roe v. Wade. But in the Ohio House and Senate, legislators are chipping away the rights of women and their doctors to make health decisions. I believe voters need to know the candidates who are running for office and make informed choices in this election.