North Carolina Panel Holds Hearing on Choose Life Plates

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   May 10, 2011   |   4:04PM   |   Charlotte, NC

North Carolina would join more than two dozen states that currently have Choose Life license plates if the state legislature approves a bill the House Transportation Committee held a hearing on today.

The plates are designed to allow state residents to support adoption and crisis pregnancy programs to help women find better solutions than abortion. The Carolina Pregnancy Care Fellowship, a collection of pro-life groups, is behind the plate.

Rep. Mitch Gillespie, a Marion Republican, has been trying to get the plate through the legislature for years and he hopes newly-elected Republicans will help him make this go-round successful. H 289 would add more than 50 specialty plates to the list in North Carolina, according to the News-Record, and put a standard design in place to help state troopers identify vehicles.

During the debate, Rep. Diane Parfitt, a Fayetteville Democrat, attempted to get a “Trust Women, Respect Choice” plate added to the list that would send money to the Planned Parenthood abortion business, but that was voted down.

“This is, I think, an appropriate counter-balance to the ‘Choose Life’ plate,’” Parfitt said, according to the newspaper. But Gillespie and other legislators voted that down on a 14-11 vote.

The committee ultimately did not cast a final vote on the bill, which also has to clear the Finance Committee before it can receive a vote on the House floor.

Last year, Bobbie Meyer, the state director of Carolina Pregnancy Care Fellowship, told LifeNews: “North Carolina is the only state in the southeast that refuses to let its citizens purchase the choose life license plate. For eight years the legislation for the choose life plate has been denied a vote even though more than 130 other plates have been approved.”

“The choose life license plate has already raised over 12 million dollars in the states that allow them thereby helping mothers and their families,” she added. “Here in NC there are 85 pregnancy care centers who last year saw over 46,000 women and children.”

NC Right to Life, the Roman Catholic Dioceses of Charlotte and Raleigh, NC Baptist Association, Russ Amerling, National Director of Choose Life license plates, The Family Policy Council of NC, Civitas NC, The Christian Action League, and NC Pro-Life Democrats all support the plates. There are currently 80 pregnancy centers across the Tar Heel State that served more than 46,000 women, men and families last year.

Brevard graphic artist Deborah Vernon Scott designed the proposed North Carolina plate, which depicts mountains and waves separated by two children’s faces on a yellow background. The phrase “Choose Life” is emblazoned in red at top.

ACTION: Tell your legislators to support the plate but going to