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"In God We Trust" License Plates Constitutional, Judge Says Yes

Last updated on Friday, April 18, 2008

(INDIANAPOLIS) - The constitutionality of the BMV’s “In God We Trust” license plates has been upheld by a Marion superior court judge.

In 2006, the legislature ordered the Bureau of Motor Vehicles to create and offer the plates at no additional charge. The BMV began issuing the plates in January 2007 as one of more than 75 options for customers.

The Indiana ACLU filed a lawsuit on behalf of an Allen County resident who paid the additional fee required for specialty license plates.

Judge Gary Miller has ruled the "In God We Trust" plates are comparable to standard plates issued by the BMV, and no group benefits from their sale.

Commissioner Ron Stiver says the BMV does not promote any one license plate design over another. He says more than $1.7-million Hoosier motorists have selected the "In God We Trust" plate.

The ACLU says it plans to appeal.

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