Christian group meets quota on pro-life license plate

MONTGOMERY, AL: Officials with the Christian Coalition of Alabama speculate that they have met an order quota to get their "Choose Life" license plates on the state's motor vehicles, thanks to a concerted PR effort.

MONTGOMERY, AL: Officials with the Christian Coalition of Alabama speculate that they have met an order quota to get their "Choose Life" license plates on the state's motor vehicles, thanks to a concerted PR effort.

The group, which has had a year to drum up 1,000 pre-ordered tags before the state will allow them to be manufactured, used mass e-mails, a monthly newsletter, numerous posters, and radio PSAs to spread the word about its cause.

At the end of August, 897 motorists had put up $50 to pre-order the plate, which promotes adoption as an alternative to abortion.

While final numbers will not be released until the November 30 campaign deadline, Alabama Christian Coalition president John Giles said, "I have a hunch that we're at or over our goal at this point."

Giles estimated that the Christian Coalition has spent between $8,000 and $10,000 on the campaign, with most of the costs going toward the printing of posters. The PSAs were recorded with inexpensive mp3 equipment and e-mailed to Christian radio stations.

According to the Associated Press, few specialty tags meet 1,000 orders and go into production. Earlier this year, tags honoring top NASCAR drivers failed to meet the quota.

Other states have not been as effective in getting the "Choose Life" license plates, where state License Plate Oversight Committees have voted against them. Legislatures in five other states have approved the tags, which are on cars in Hawaii, Florida, and Mississippi, held up by legal battles in Louisiana and South Carolina, and about to go into production in Oklahoma.

In Alabama, the motion was passed by one vote in December 2001, thus starting the one-year quota period.

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