But he hinted at some displeasure with the proposal during a Saturday news conference.
“We should not be taking up bills like that when we have bills that have been in front of the legislature for a year, where we have the opportunity to directly save lives,” DeWine said, according to WTOL-TV in Toledo.
Earlier last week, he said the legislature should first pass “some protections” related to gun violence.
Since the Dayton shooting in 2019 that killed nine people, he has been pushing for more strenuous background checks for gun buyers.
DeWine said he’ll address the issue in the week ahead.
The bill, which passed 18-11, with four Republicans and seven Democrats voting against it, would remove the requirement that someone must try to retreat before shooting in self-defense.
The Ohio House passed the proposal Thursday on a party-line 52-31 vote, Cleveland.com reported.
The current law makes an exception for self-defense shootings in one’s own home or vehicle, according to WTOL.
“My right to defend myself from serious bodily harm or death does not change just because I am outside the walls of my home … inside or outside my car. My right to defend myself from serious bodily harm or death should be extended to anywhere I am lawfully allowed to be,” Rep. Kyle Koehler, R-Springfield, tweeted earlier this month.
Democratic critics say the bill would encourage violence and will disproportionately affect Black men, claiming a jury would be less likely to believe they shot in self-defense and in a potential confrontation with a shooter they would be more likely to be perceived as a threat than a White man, WBNS-TV in Columbus reported.
“Black people are going to die disproportionately compared to white people,” Rep. Stephanie Howse, D-Cleveland, said.
The legislation is also opposed by the Ohio Association of Chiefs of Police and the Ohio Prosecuting Attorneys Association who called it a solution in search of a problem. The association says wrongfully prosecuting those who shoot in self-defense has been an issue, WBNS-TV of Columbus reported.
More than two dozen other states have passed similar laws.