Not only would these oppressive regulations trample the First Amendment, they would unfairly favor liberal groups over conservative and libertarian organizations.
Nonprofit organizations designated as 501(c)4 are already limited in their ability to engage in “candidate-related political activity.” The new regulations are meant to broaden the definitions of both “candidate” and “political activity” to give the IRS more power to regulate conservative action. But get this: the new rules would NOT apply to labor unions or trade associations.
These new definitions would include:
-Criticism of incumbents 30 days before primary elections and 60 days before general elections (in other words, you can't speak poorly about those already in power)
-Any references to politicians (candidates, appointees, etc.)
-Hosting candidate debates
-Posting voting records of incumbents on websites before elections
-Creating or distributing voter guides
-Phone calls about upcoming votes (even when no candidate is mentioned)
-Voter registration drives (no more signing up folks at churches or in your neighborhoods, for instance)
-Donating money to groups that engage in political activity
-Volunteer activities if they relate to voting or candidates
Every action listed above, among others, would have to be submitted to the IRS for review, would be subject to taxation and would be treated as restricted candidate-related political activity. The restrictions include every type of communication, from newspapers to television to oral speech that can reach 500 people or more.
Before it can finalize the new regulations, the IRS must review all public comments. If you comment and the IRS doesn’t address your concerns, the regulations can be overturned.
We need to inundate the IRS with comments by the February 27th deadline. Please, help me encourage others to help stop the gross abuse of power. We MUST let the IRS know that the new rules are discriminatory, that they violate the first amendment, and that they burden the American people.
Email them to http://www.regulations.gov. Be sure to include the citation: IRS REG-134417-13 in subject line or body of your email.
Please cc your congressmen on all correspondence to the IRS and keep copies for your own records. Make sure you spread the word and ask your family members and friends to comment too.
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