by Steven Ertelt
August 17, 2005
Tulsa, OK (LifeNews.com) — An Oklahoma judge is dismissing a case filed by abortion advocate seeking to overturn the issuing of Choose Life license plates there. U.S. District Court Judge Claire Eagan says the lawsuit belongs in state courts and not federal courts.
The pro-life license plates cost $35 more than normal and part of the proceeds go to groups that help pregnant women find alternatives to abortion.
Judge Eagan said the additional cost is a tax, not a fee, and, as a result, belongs in state courts rather than in the federal judicial system.
Attorneys for the abortion advocates told the Associated Press they are considering whether to appeal her ruling or move to state courts. They say the plates amount to "viewpoint discrimination" because ther are no pro-abortion counterparts.
The Choose Life plates raise money for non-profit agencies that do not counsel or refer for abortion, do not charge for their services, and help women in crisis pregnancies who choose adoption.
Specifically, 60% of the funds raised will directly benefit women in crisis pregnancy situations that choose to place their babies for adoption. It will provide food, clothing, transportation, medical assistance or whatever is needed.
Forty percent of the funds can be used for counselor training, educational materials, videos, etc. Counselors will be trained to present adoption as an option for pregnant woman in crisis. None of the funds can be used for administrative expenses.
According to a group backing the plate, "The funds raised will fill a void that currently exists in the initial emergency stages of the adoption process and help make adoption a more achievable and chosen choice in Oklahoma."