I’ve always been unclear on the limits of official church activity with respect to political causes and maintaining their tax-exempt status, so this is as much a request for information as discussion.
This is a proposed response to the funding of the Yes on Prop 8 campaign by the Mormons–essentially, arguing that by backing the Yes on 8 campaign, they are in violation of federal law with respect to tax-exempt organizations.
Does this effort carry any legal weight? Does it make sense? Is it likely to have any effect at all?
Edit: Apologies for the thread title – I understand that the proper name of the church in question is the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Mods, please fix if you wish.
I had understood that most of the funding came, not from the Church itself, but from a number of individuals who happened to be members of the Church. And of course, individuals can and do contribute to whatever political causes they like.
As a Gay man, as much as I would like to get on this bandwagon, I can’t.
I am sure just as many bigoted, staunch Catholics donated to put a stop to Gay marriage.
More shocking to me is the 70% of black voters who decided this bigotry is acceptable.
Lots of blame to go around.
This doesn’t mean I will ever support the LDS in any shape or form, but to single them out seems a bit disingenuous.
Churches can encourage people to vote certain ways on issues without any problems. It’s only when they get into backing (or telling people not to back) particular candidates that they risk losing their tax exempt status.
For me, it seems a reasonable line to draw between “issues” and constitutional amendments. Either by involving the legislative branch of government to have more oversight (no more simple majority tyrrany), or by enforcing the tax exempt status, which is admittedly a very difficult thing to enforce.