June 10, marks the 10th anniversary of the Choose Life specialty
license plate. According to a Gainesville Sun article, the plates are
available in 24 states and have generated more than $10 million in user
fees nationwide. Six of these states, including Arizona and Missouri,
approved their own versions of the plate only this year.
Illinoisans, however, remains unable to buy the Choose Life plate,
though the Chicago-based Thomas More Society is working to change this.
In April of this year, the Thomas More Society filed a petition asking
the U.S. Supreme Court to review and reverse a decision prohibiting the
issuance and sale of "Choose Life" specialty license plates in
Illinois. The Supreme Court's decision could have a major effect on the
availability of these plates in every state in the U.S.
While the odds against the Supreme Court agreeing to hear any given
appeal may seem overwhelming (only 1 of every 120 petitions has been
granted in recent years), Brejcha and the other Choose Life Illinois
lawyers are optimistic.
"If anything, our clients' claim against Illinois is overripe for
review," continues Brejcha. "Our petition for review highlights the
fact that litigation concerning the 'Choose Life' plates over the last
ten years has created a patchwork of conflicting decisions. We will be
greatly surprised, as well as disappointed, if the Court fails to grant
Background of Illinois "Choose Life" Plates
Over 25,000 Illinois citizens have signed petitions for the "Choose
Life" plate, sale proceeds of which were to fund Illinois adoption
agencies to help children find lifetime homes with loving families.
However, Illinois authorities stymied efforts to get the plate
approved, even though scores of other specialty plates, from supporting
troops or peace to celebrating college fraternities, were approved
After the "Choose Life" petitions were submitted, bills introduced in
the Illinois General Assembly were diverted to a special subcommittee,
chaired by then State Senator Barack Obama, where they died without any
Contact: Tom Brejcha
Source: Thomas More Society
Date: June 10, 2009
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The IFRL is the largest grassroots pro-life organization in
Illinois. A non-profit organization, that serves as the state
coordinating body for local pro-life chapters representing thousands of
Illinois citizens working to restore respect for all human life in our
society. The IFRL is composed of people of different political
persuasions, various faiths and diverse economic, social and ethnic
backgrounds. Since 1973 the Illinois Federation for Right to Life has
been working to end abortion and restore legal protection to those members of the
human family who are threatened by abortion, infanticide and euthanasia. Diverse though we are, we hold one common belief - that
every human being has an inalienable right to life that is precious and must be protected. IFRL is
dedicated to restoring the right to life to the unborn, and protection
for the disabled and the elderly. Click here to learn more about the IFRL.