ACLU - tax deductible

Why are contributions to the ACLU not tax deductible for charitable purposes?

Because it’s not a charity.

Why not? All they do is help people.

I believe that tax-exempt charities are not allowed to engage in political lobbying, which would sort of defeat the ACLU’s purpose.

Does the ACLU engage in political lobbying? I thought all they did was assist in legal cases and write opinion pieces.

They help some, but their big cause is fighting for liberal policies. Who are they helping when they sue to have, say, the 10 Commandments removed from a court of law that requires you to place your hand on a bible and swear to tell the truth, nothing but the truth, so help you GOD?

They are clearly a political apparatus, little else.

They don’t actually assist in a huge number of legal cases, because they haven’t got the resources to do so. They have relatively few staff attorneys - most of their lawyers are employed elsewhere and simply donate their time.

I won’t rise to the bait of the above poster, who apparently thinks he’s in GD or (more appropriately) the Pit.

GD or the Pit?!? I’m just offering a reason they aren’t tax-deductable. Read twice next time

SeekingTruth: Your post was a partisan attack on the ACLU, not a legitimate, factual statement regarding the OP. If you want to debate whether the ACLU is good or not, you need to do that in Great Debates. Compare and contrast your post to ruadh’s:

I don’t think you can be forced to swear on a bible. If you find that objectionable, you just state that you will tell the truth without invoking God or a bible.

Donations to the ACLU are not tax-deductible because the organization engages in legislative lobbying. Gifts to the ACLU Foundation, on the other hand, are deductible, because that arm of the organization engages solely in legal representation and communications efforts. You can read all about it on this page of the ACLU’s website.

And Thin Ice is correct - no court in the country can force you to swear on a bible, so help you god. On this subject, The Master Speaks.

The rules for a tax-deductible non-profit organizations are wider than just charities. The educational programs of the ACLU and their legal defense of the Bill of Rights in the courts would qualify for tax-ded status if that was all they did. They do lobby Congress, though, and they lobby state legislatures in many states. Lobbying disqualifies an org from tax-exempt status.