Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts Unveils New Choose Life License Plates

State   Micaiah Bilger   Nov 27, 2017   |   5:09PM    Lincoln, Nebraska

Nebraska pro-life advocates soon will be able to display their support for unborn babies and moms on their license plates.

On Monday, Gov. Pete Ricketts unveiled the new “Choose Life” license plate design, which features the silhouette of a mother and young child holding hands by a sunset.

“The design of this plate is meant to inspire hope,” Ricketts said.

KETV News 7 reports Nebraskans will be able to buy the pro-life license plates starting on Jan. 1. Ricketts revealed the design during a news conference Monday with Lt. Gov. Mike Foley, Sen. Dan Watermeier, Paige Edwards of the University of Nebraska Lincoln Students for Life and Holly Sak of Bethlehem House, according to the report.

The plates will cost $5 more than a standard Nebraska license plate, and the proceeds will be given to help families through the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program. More information about ordering a “Choose Life” license plate is available here.

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“Choose Life License Plates provide an important opportunity for the citizens of Nebraska to celebrate the culture of life,” said Karen Bowling, executive director of the Nebraska Family Alliance. “This design reflects a growing support for the protection of Nebraska’s greatest resource, our children.”

The state legislature approved the license plates in April. The plates have been contentious in Nebraska for years. Opponents argued that the plates are “state-sanctioned speech” and would face legal challenges.

But a challenge seems highly unlikely after North Carolina won a long court battle involving its “Choose Life” license plates in 2016. In the case, the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the pro-life license plates are constitutional.

The North Carolina case went all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court in 2015, LifeNews reported. The high court ordered the 4th Circuit Court, which previously struck down the law, to reconsider the case in light of the Supreme Court’s decision in another license plate case, Walker v. Texas Division, Sons of Confederate Veterans.

Nebraska will be the 30th state to offer the “Choose Life” license plates. According to Choose Life America, an organization that encourages states to approve the plates, proceeds from the sales have raised about $24 million to help pregnant and parenting families and adoptions. In the Midwest, Indiana raised $650,000, and Ohio raised more than $500,000. Both states have more than 25,000 vehicles with “Choose Life” plates, according to the organization.