Ohio governor signs ban on abortion after 1st heartbeat

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio's governor has signed a bill imposing one of the nation's toughest abortion restrictions.

Republican Gov. Mike DeWine followed through Thursday on his pledge to sign the heartbeat bill. It cleared the state Legislature on Wednesday.

DeWine's signature makes Ohio the fifth state to ban abortions after the first detectable fetal heartbeat. That can come as early as five or six weeks into pregnancy, before many women know they're pregnant.

DeWine's support for the bill breaks with his predecessor. Former Republican Gov. John Kasich (KAY'-sik) twice vetoed it on grounds it was unconstitutional and would spark a costly court challenge.

Opponents in Ohio have already vowed to sue.