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Ohio Dems OK'd rape counselor 'gag' they attack

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Democratic state lawmakers blasting Ohio Gov. John Kasich (KAY'-sik) and fellow Republicans for a budget measure that restricts rape-crisis counseling supported a bill last month with nearly identical language.

The amendment to Ohio's $62 billion, two-year state operating budget sets up a dedicated funding stream for rape crisis programs that receive state funding but don't refer for abortions.

Ohio Democratic Party Chairman Chris Redfern and state treasurer candidate Connie Pillich criticize the measure in Twitter posts, calling it bad for women and a "gag" on rape crisis counselors. But both cast yes votes June 16 on a House bill that contained the same provision.

Redfern said Tuesday that Democrats, who liked the new funding provisions, were assured the offending language would be removed in the budget, but it wasn't.

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