Iowa Pro-Life Bill Would Create "Choose Life" License Plates

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Feb 10, 2004   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Iowa Pro-Life Bill Would Create "Choose Life" License Plates

by Paul Nowak Staff Writer
February 10, 2004

Des Moines, IA ( — Pro-life Iowans are hoping their state will be the next to issue a "Choose Life" plate to benefit mothers who are seeking adoption as an alternative to abortion. The bill, sponsored by Rep. Dwayne Alons (R-Hull) and Sen. Kitty Rehberg (R-Rowley), is currently in the House Transportation Committee.

If the bill passes, the license plates would fund non-profit organizations that provide services to pregnant women free of charge. Sixty percent of the money would be used for clothing, housing, medical care, food, and other necessities, while the other forty percent would be used for counseling, training or advertising.

The funds cannot be used for administrative, legal, or capital expenditures. Groups that counsel women to have abortions, or perform abortions, will not be eligible for the funding.

Part of the reasoning for the exclusion of pro-abortion organizations is the amount of funding they already receive from federal and state tax dollars.

According to Iowa Right to Life, from 2001-2003 Planned Parenthood and other pro-abortion organizations in Iowa received over $8 million in funding from state and federal programs. On the national level, Planned Parenthood received over $254 million in federal funding alone in 2002-2003 – not including the funds they receive from donations and fees for performing abortions.

Despite this, Planned Parenthood of Iowa has attacked the "Choose Life" plates, and have been promoting a "Respect Choice" plate petition.

"One must truly wonder how any reasonable person could possibly oppose the ‘Choose Life’ bill," said Kim Gordon, Executive Director of Iowa Right to Life.

"Here is a bill that, if signed into law, would actually touch the lives of women by helping them with physical needs that address many of the problems associated with unplanned pregnancies," Gordon told "Unfortunately, the state does very little if nothing to fund organizations that focus on helping women choose life and encourage adoption."

"This is a very simple issue; the "Choose Life" license plates help to promote adoption through helping women during an unplanned pregnancy," Gordon adds. "We are not surprised that Planned Parenthood is taking an active role to oppose this bill, it only sheds more light on what type of an organization they truly are."

Ten states currently allow Choose Life plates on residents’ cars: Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Hawaii, Arkansas, Connecticut, Maryland, and Louisiana, and Montana.

Both Tennessee and South Carolina have approved "Choose Life" plates, but have not yet made them available to motorists.

In Florida alone, revenues from the "Choose Life" plate have generated over $2 million in funding for pro-adoption organizations.

Related Sites:
Iowa Right to Life Committee –