Court of Appeals rules ‘Choose Life’ license plate law unconstitutional
RICHMOND, Va. — The U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Tuesday that a North Carolina law that would have allowed the production of a “Choose Life” license plate, but not an opposing viewpoint plate, is unconstitutional.
WTVD reported that lawmakers approved the plates in 2011 and rejected several proposals to also offer plates with the messages “Trust Women” and “Respect Choice.”
A U.S. District Judge later ruled that the anti-abortion plate is unconstitutional, and the state was prohibited from manufacturing the plates while the case was pending, prompting an appeal.
Florida-based Choose Life Inc. has been lobbying for creation of the plates across the country. Twenty-nine states and the District Columbia offer the plates, the organization says, and efforts are underway in several other states.
In North Carolina, the “Choose Life” plate was one of 80 specialty tags approved by the General Assembly in 2011. Each “Choose Life” plate would cost $25, with $15 of that going to the Carolina Pregnancy Care Fellowship, an association of nonprofit pregnancy counseling centers.