Legal Group Reveals IRS Violated First Amendment Rights

Legal Group Reveals IRS Violated First Amendment Rights

( – Texas lawyers say the IRS is ignoring the Constitution and pursuing religious groups for tax. Worse, they’re showing political as well as religious bias.

On June 25, Representative Chip Roy (R-TX) wrote to IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig, protesting at a recent decision to deny tax-exempt status to a Texas nonprofit. Christians Engaged, a Garland, TX-based advocacy group, encourages Christians to be active citizens. It’s a non-partisan group with no party affiliations – but, in denying it tax-exempt status, the IRS made an astonishing claim.

According to the IRS, “Bible teachings are typically affiliated with the [Republican] Party and candidates,” so, by their reckoning, Christians Engaged is a partisan group and is “engaged in prohibited political campaign intervention.” Now a legal group, First Liberty Institute, says the IRS has violated the First Amendment by mischaracterizing the nonprofit as a political organization.

Representative Roy has made the same points in his letter to the IRS, but he’s also worried about a bigger threat. He wrote that, if the IRS applies this argument broadly, it could threaten the tax-exempt status of thousands of churches. If the Bible is “typically affiliated” with the GOP, that justifies a political war on religion – and that never ends well.

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