Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Choose Life License Plates could be on their way to Michigan

On March 5, the Michigan Senate Transportation Committee reported SB 84 out of committee by a vote of 4‑1. If passed by the state legislature and signed by the governor, SB 84 would authorize a Choose Life fundraising license plate. The license plate would raise funds for organizations that submit grant proposals for specific abortion prevention projects. The bill stipulates that the funds will be used to promote alternatives to abortion, including adoption, provide practical support to pregnant women, and conduct outreach to at‑risk populations regarding positive pregnancy options.

Choose Life license plates are a common way states allow charities to help women experiencing an unplanned pregnancies. More than 25 states have passed Choose Life license plate legislation including Indiana, Ohio, and Pennsylvania. Michigan has allowed a wide variety of special causes to raise funds using specialty plates including Michigan’s 15 state-supported universities, the Boy Scouts of America, breast cancer awareness, lighthouse preservation, veterans’ memorial, water quality, wildlife habitat, and disaster relief through the American Red Cross and Salvation Army.

If the legislation passes, the money would be used to support pregnant women and promote alternatives to abortion. The legislation directs that “money disbursed to the Choose Life Michigan Fund under this section shall be distributed to eligible nonprofit organizations that expend money on projects that promote alternatives to abortion.” Eligible non-profits include “crisis pregnancy centers, homes for pregnant women, and other organizations that provide practical support to pregnant women, provide practical outreach to at‑risk populations, and promote life‑saving programs and projects as alternatives to abortion.”

Unfortunately, pro-abortion groups are already lying about this legislation. Planned Parenthood, the leading abortion provider in the United States, opposes this legislation and in an e-mail to supporters, Planned Parenthood Advocates of Michigan falsely claimed “tax dollars” would be used to administer the funds from the Choose Life license plates. This claim is false. The proceeds from the sale of specialty license plates (they cost an additional $35 per year) fund the administration costs and the grants to eligible non-profits.

On the other hand, Planned Parenthood receives more than $500 million a year in government funding.

Those in favor of legal abortion often claim they are not in favor of abortion but the choice to have an abortion. Only organizations that are pro-abortion would be opposed to prolife people using their own money to buy license plates which help fund efforts to help women in unplanned pregnancies choose life. None of the funds or distribution of funds can legally prevent a woman from obtaining an abortion.