Friday, June 10, 2011
Paul D. Weitzel (an attorney who according to his Bepress description works in the U.S. District Courts) has posted 501(c)(3) Charitable Organizations After Citizens United on SSRN. Here is the abstract:
This paper argues that tax deductible charities have a constitutional right to speak about politics. 501(c)(3) organizations include all tax deductible charities, including religious groups. Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission abrogated the ban on political speech by 501(c)(3) organizations by rejecting the reasoning in Regan v. Taxation with Representation of Washington. Regan found that 501(c)(3) organizations could be prohibited from speaking because they would still be able to speak through affiliate organizations. Citizens United rejected this argument when applied to for-profit corporations, and that reasoning applies equally to non-profit organizations. Citizens United also rejected the distinction between subsidies and punishments, which Regan relied on in its holding.