Saturday, April 08, 2006

Americans United: Buckeye Backlash

Americans United: Buckeye Backlash: "...Rabbi Harold J. Berman told The New York Times that he signed on to the IRS complaint because “government is clearly impaired when churches get too actively involved in government, and I think religion gets impaired when government acts in religious affairs.
"The IRS prohibits houses of worship and other 501(c)(3) organizations from using their resources to advance or oppose a candidate’s bid for public office. Churches and other non-profit groups, however, are allowed to engage in issue advocacy. Such status provides houses of worship and other non-profits exemption from income taxation and donations to those entities are tax deductible. Political organizations, however, do not receive such tax breaks. The IRS can revoke non-profits’ tax-exempt status or levy fines against them if they are found to have engaged improperly in campaigns for public office...."

“...Non-profit status is a privilege, not a right,” said the Barry W. Lynn, executive director of Americans United. “Turning our nation’s churches into cogs in a political machine violates the integrity of religion and undercuts the fairness of the democratic process....”

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