Ohio gubernatorial candidate Jim Renacci, a Republican primary challenger to incumbent Governor Mike DeWine, promised to appoint an administration official to serve as a pro-life advocate if he were elected.

According to the candidate, the individual, who would be given the title “Unborn Child Advocate,” would play a key role in his administration.

“I have been crystal clear and consistent on my commitment to protecting the sanctity of life and protecting the voiceless victims of abortion. As governor I will lead the fight for the unborn by appointing an official to serve in the role of Unborn Child Advocate. This needs to be a high-priority position, not like the weak political gestures we’ve seen in the DeWine administration,” said Renacci.

Furthermore, the GOP contender pointed to his decision to name Joe Knopp, a conservative and pro-life filmmaker, as his running mate as further validation of his stance.

“One of the many reasons I am running with Joe Knopp is his unshakeable faith in God and his fearless stance against abortion,” he continued.

Knopp produced the film Unplanned, the story of a Planned Parenthood abortion clinic director’s shift to becoming an advocate for the unborn.

The pro-life movement has grown throughout the state, as lawmakers seek to protect the rights of the unborn. For example, the Ohio State Legislature approved a pro-life bill that prevents doctors who work for state-funded hospitals and medical schools from contracting with abortion clinics.

The Born Alive Infant Protection Act, sponsored by State Senators Terry Johnson (R-McDermott) and Steve Huffman (R-Tipp City), would also require doctors to conduct medical treatment on babies that survive failed abortions. Physicians will also be forced to report instances of infants being born alive after failed abortions to the Ohio Department of Health.

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Cooper Moran is a reporter for The Ohio Star and The Star News Network. Email tips to [email protected]