COLUMBUS, Ohio — The Ohio "March for Life" comes a month before thousands of Ohioans will head to the polls. 

What You Need To Know

  • The Ohio March for Life rally is being hosted at the statehouse on Friday

  • Issue 1 addresses the right to reproductive treatment 

  • Currently Ohio's Heartbeat Law is on hold while under appeal 
  • Abortions are legal until 22 weeks 
  • Voter registration ends Oct. 10 and early voting starts Oct. 11

Election Day is around the corner, and a variety of events are on tap surrounding the issues set to be on the ballot this November.

One of those is Issue 1, which is a citizens-led initiative aiming to add abortion rights to the Ohio Constitution. Opponents of the issue are marching at the Statehouse on Friday during the Ohio “March for Life” rally. 

While the rally has been a reoccurring event, their focus this year will be on Issue 1. If passed, Issue 1 would establish the right to one’s own reproductive medical treatment that includes but is not limited to abortion.

The Heartbeat Law is currently on hold while under appeal. Due to the court case, abortions are legal for up to about 22 weeks. Tom Sutton, a political science professor at Baldwin Wallace university, said that the rally will serve as a time to get people interested and excited about voting no matter which way they fall on the issue.

“It reminds them not only for themselves to get involved and vote, but also to tell others whom they know, who support this to do the same,” said Sutton. “It has a rippling effect in the short term. Now, does it have a final effect on Election Day? It's one of those many things that we really can't say causation is direct, but it certainly helps. That's why rallies like this happen, right as you're starting to get into the voting season.”

While rallies like Ohio “March for Life” can be a hot spot for voter registration and a push for early voting, professor Sutton calls events like it “rhetorical fire,” meaning that those attending already have set beliefs on the issue rather than coming out to learn more about it. He said this could be a major difference between how Issue 1 events are held versus Issue 2, which addresses the legalization of recreational marijuana.

“This is certainly an issue that lends itself to that, talking about abortion and its access or lack thereof on other issues where it might be more technical, it might be something like the marijuana legalization statute that's also on the ballot, that might be more something that provides information that voters can use if they're on the fence about whether they might vote for or against that legalization for recreational use," said Sutton. “The abortion issue, I think that's one where information is best gotten from more objective sources than a rally.”

The last day to register to vote is Tuesday, Oct. 10 and early voting starts on Wednesday, Oct. 11.