by Steven Ertelt
September 28, 2005
Columbia, SC (LifeNews.com) — South Carolina must pay the legal bills Planned Parenthood incurred when it challenged the state over the issuance of Choose Life license plates. The abortion business eventually won its suit in a federal appeals court claiming the plates were discriminatory.
The state Budget and Control Board refused to let the Departments of Corrections, Social Services and Motor Vehicles will be required to use a contingency fund to spend $157,000 for the legal bills.
Corrections Department Director Jon Ozmint says the agencies didn’t do anything that would have required them to fork over the money.
Last year, the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled the plates were unconstitutional because they limited a public forum of speech to pro-life advocates because there are no pro-abortion license plates. Another federal appellate court ruled Louisiana’s Choose Life plates are constitutional.
Passed in 2001, the measure would allow state residents to spend $70 on the specialty plates and part of the funds would go to groups that help women find alternatives to abortion.
However, shortly after the measure took effect, Planned Parenthood filed a lawsuit contending that the plates discriminate against those who support abortion.
South Carolina officials responded that the abortion business had no standing to sue because it had no proposed a plate of its own, but a district court disagreed.
Related web sites:
South Carolina Citizens for Life – https://www.sclife.org