Virginia Governor Tim Kaine Signs Bill Creating Choose Life License Plates

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Mar 30, 2009   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Virginia Governor Tim Kaine Signs Bill Creating Choose Life License Plates

by Steven Ertelt Editor
March 30
, 2009

Richmond, VA ( — After lobbying from advocates on both sides of the abortion debate, pro-abortion Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine has signed a bill that would create Choose Life license plates. The bill includes other license plates, which may have made it easier for Kaine to sign the legislation into law.

Kaine said he signed the Choose Life plate bill only because he thinks state residents should have the right to a specialty plate.

"I sign this legislation today in keeping with the Commonwealth’s longtime practice of approving specialty plates with all manner of political and social messages," he said in a statement obtained.

Kaine also said he would sign a bill brought by abortion advocates for a pro-abortion plate.

"If Planned Parenthood … or another similar organization ever chooses to seek a specialty license plate in Virginia, I believe the constitution would require the state to approve that plate to protect against any viewpoint discrimination," he said.

With Kaine signing off on the bill, Virginia becomes the twenty-third state to have a Choose Life license plate, where portions of the proceeds from the sale of the plates fund pregnancy centers and adoption programs.

In order for the Choose Life plates to go into effect, 350 people must sign up for the plates before the Department of Motor Vehicles can officially authorize production.

When the first 1,000 plates are sold, $15 of the $25 fee paid to the DMV will be sent to pregnancy centers.

Abortion advocates wanted Kaine to veto the bill, which would likely have been overridden had he done so.

Nancy Keenan, the head of NARAL, claims that an offer of help to pregnant women is "propaganda" and she urged Kaine, whom President Barack Obama selected to become the national Democratic Party chairman, to veto the bill.

Senator Ken Cuccinelli was the sponsor of the Choose Life plate bill that a Senate committee defeated earlier in the legislative session.

Cuccinelli, however, didn’t give up and amended another license plate bill on the floor of the Senate several days later with the Choose Life plate on a 20-19 vote.

He says 450 people have already signed up for the plates and expects more to do so now that motorists can officially sign up for them.

Victoria Cobb, the head of the Family Foundation, had been asking pro-life advocates to contact Governor Kaine urging him to support the plate. The Virginia Society for Human Life and other pro-life groups also supported the plate.

The plate features a cartoon drawing of a child and the words Choose Life.

ACTION: Thank Governor Kaine for signing SB 817. Contact him at

Related web sites:
Virginia Governor –
Family Foundation –
Virginia Legislature –
Virginia Society for Human Life –

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