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Voters in the Hands of an Angry God

Sep 27, 2008
Tomorrow, pastors in 20 states will give politically based sermons in protest of the IRS’s rule disallowing 501(c)(3) organizations from participating in political activities. Should any of the churches then have their 501(c)(3) status withdrawn by the IRS, the organizers of the protest, the Alliance Defense Fund (ADF), is expected to bring suit challenging the constitutionality of the penalties.

The ADF, like most such outfits, is a tireless defender of a small selection of freedoms, including the freedom to require the American taxpayer to underwrite political proselytizing on behalf of radical religious groups.

The Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life provides us with a a cogent analysis of ADF’s plans. Pastors to Protest IRS Rules on Political Advocacy features an excellent interview with Robert W. Tuttle, law professor at George Washington University Law School who holds a slew of degrees in law and religion. Professor Tuttle weighs the pros and cons of the possible law suit, concluding that it probably would not be successful.

Given the current constitution of the Court, however, one cannot be too sure.


Update: More than two dozen pastors challenged the IRA on September 28, some of them endorsing a candidate. The next day, Americans United For Separation of Church and State filed complaints with the IRS regarding six of the sermons.1
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1 Americans Wary of Church Involvement in Partisan Politics, from The Pew Forum on Religion and Public life, October 1, 2008 (Accessed October 5, 2008)
tags: Religion | Politics | Taxes

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