"Choose Life" license plates ruled unconstitutional

The courts continue to smack down unconstitutional laws passed by the NCGOP. Another one bites the dust: Received via email from the ACLU.

RICHMOND, VA – The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit today ruled that a 2011 North Carolina law that would have allowed the production of a “Choose Life” license plate, but not an alternative plate with a message supporting reproductive freedom, is unconstitutional.

“Issuing a ‘Choose Life’ specialty license plate while refusing to issue a pro-choice specialty license plate constitutes blatant viewpoint discrimination squarely at odds with the First Amendment,” the court ruled in a unanimous 3-0 opinion.

“Today’s ruling protects the right of North Carolinians of all political beliefs to have equal access to avenues for free speech,” said Chris Brook, Legal Director for the ACLU of North Carolina Legal Foundation, who argued the case in front of the Fourth Circuit. “As the court reiterated today, the government cannot create an avenue of expression for one side of a contentious political issue while denying an equal opportunity to citizens with the opposite view. North Carolina’s one-sided license plate scheme constituted blatant viewpoint discrimination in violation of the First Amendment. We would have made the exact same argument if the situation was reversed, and the state planned on issuing a pro-choice plate while not offering one expressing the opposite point of view.”

Comments

What's astounding

is that the right-wing nut jobs could have solved this very easily and inexpensively by simply approving another plate that expressed the opposing view, but they repeatedly refused to do so.

So the "I'm going to Raleigh to stop this wasteful government spending!" crowd wasted tax dollars attempting to defend this indefensible stupidity in court.

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"I will have a priority on building relationships with the minority caucus. I want to put substance behind those campaign speeches." -- Thom Tillis, Nov. 5, 2014