Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog

Editor: Gerry W. Beyer
Texas Tech Univ. School of Law

Monday, October 8, 2012

Pastors Unite in Attempt to Get the IRS To Act

Images-16Yesterday, over 1,000 religious leaders made political endorsements from the pulpit to defy the Internal Revenue Service. Pastors hope that their outcry will prompt the IRS to enforce the 1954 code that prohibits tax exempt organizations, including churches, from making political endorsements.  Alliance Defending Freedom is in charge of coordinating the leaders who want to participate in this movement.

Once the IRS applies the code to a particular church or pastor, they can go ahead and bring this issue before the court.  They believe the court would easily rule the provision is unconstitutional and violates the first amendment.  

They want to make sure that the pastor is deciding what comes from the pulpit, not the IRS.  To date, the IRS has just been using the law as a threat, so pastors are afraid to make any statements that could be construed as political messages. The spokeswoman for the IRS declined to comment, directing all inquiries to the government's handbook. 

See Pastors To Take On IRS in Plan to Preach Politics From the Pulpit, FoxNews, Oct. 7, 2012.

Special thanks to David S. Luber (Attorney at law, Florida Probate Attorney Wills and Estates Law Firm) for bringing this article to my attention.


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