By Christy Strawser
LANSING (CBS Detroit) Right to life supporters may soon be able to spread their message — literally — everywhere they go, with a specialized license plate.
The Michigan Senate passed a resolution sponsored by Sen. Patrick Colbeck, R-Canton that would allow drivers to get a “Choose Life” license plate. The measure, which was proposed by Right to Life last month, according to MLive.com as a way to “unleash generosity” for the cause, now heads to the House of Representatives.
Revenue from the $35 plates would go to a fund established by Right to Life of Michigan, which opposes abortion.
“I want to make sure we have a life affirming choice … and that they have the resources they need to make a life affirming choice,” Colbeck said about the initiative, adding “one of those unalienable rights is right to life” and this bill is about supporting that.
Colbeck anticipates this will pass the House and go to the Republican Gov. Rick Snyder, whom he also believes will support it.
Sen. Hoon-Yung Hopgood, D-Taylor, proposed an amendment that would have created a “Women’s Health” fundraising plate to benefit Planned Parenthood of Michigan.
Per MLive, Republicans shot down that amendment, along with another proposed by Sen. Steve Bieda, D-Warren, that would have used revenue from the “Choose Life” plate to fund infant mortality reduction programs through the Department of Human Services.
“It’s probably the most political sourcing I’ve ever seen for a license plate,” Bieda said. “And I really thought if the intent is to save babies, and that’s always a good thing, we should be doing something to decrease infant mortality rates.”
“I think if you really are interested in saving babies, this is the best place you can go with this,” he said about his amendment, which was voted down by Republicans. He added that infant mortality rates in Detroit are between 13 and 14 percent, which is worse than some Third World countries.
Colbeck also tried to push the Choose Life plate through in 2010 and 12, but it eventually was rejected.
Currently there are license plates to support programs like the Boy Scouts and organ donation.
Will the third time be the charm for the ‘Choose Life’ plates? Colbeck hopes so, adding purchase of the plate is purely voluntary.
“This Choose Life license plate provides people with a choice, the idea is that we’re promoting the idea of choice with the title ‘Choose Life,'” he said. “They don’t have to buy it, it’s optional.”