A Nevada man is suing the state for its initial refusal to issue him a vanity plate reading “GOPALIN” on the grounds that it was too political. According to James Linlor, the state had approved other such plates—like “DMOCRAT” or “AL GORE”—and when he tried submitting an application for a “GO OBAMA” plate, it was accepted, the Reno Gazette-Journal reports. But Nevada has already agreed that it made a mistake, and issued him the plates.
“I’m a little baffled why he would file a lawsuit in July when he got the plate in December,” the state’s DMV director says. But Linlor’s lawyer says his client wants to make sure the same thing never happens again, particularly with the 2012 election approaching. “Their procedures are unconstitutional,” he says. “They seem to have a hit and miss approach to deciding what’s approvable.” Nevada’s code prohibits plates that express “contempt, ridicule or superiority of … political affiliation.