The Associated Press published an article about a case brought by the ACLU of Ohio in which the ACLU of Illinois is serving as counsel. The case, Preterm Cleveland, Inc. v. Kasich, seeks to enjoin several provisions in the state’s biennial budget bill that restrict access to abortions care. The suit is brought under the Ohio Constitution’s single subject rule, which exists to foster fairness in the legislative process, preventing the legislature from tucking away controversial riders in a must-pass budget bill. The inclusion of controversial provisions targeting abortion care constitute a blatant violation of the single subject rule. The ACLU has asked the court to enter judgment striking down the offensive provisions.
The lawsuit says the transfer agreement provision and two other abortion-related pieces of the budget violate a constitutional rule holding bills to one subject.
Single-subject rules exist to avoid complexity in legislation, to prevent unintended consequences and to keep lawmakers from tucking items into bills without the knowledge of the public or legislative colleagues.