IRS in Violation of First Amendment Rights, Legal Group Claims

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(TheConservativeNews.org) – Earlier this month, the IRS caused a stir among Conservatives when it denied tax-exempt status to Christians Engaged, a religious nonprofit. The federal tax authority’s reasoning was that the group promoted political causes and candidates, an activity that makes an organization ineligible for charitable status.

Christians Engaged pushed back against this finding. The group’s representatives claimed that, while they promote political and civic engagement, they do not campaign for any candidates or parties in particular. Because Christian organizations are “typically affiliated with” Republicans, however, the IRS maintained it was justified in refusing to grant an exemption.

Christians Engaged filed a legal challenge in response to the ruling with a legal nonprofit called the First Liberty Institute representing them in the action.

Now, it looks like the challenge to this IRS ruling is picking up steam. On Friday, June 25, Rep. Chip Roy (R-TX) sent a letter to IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig with 14 of his Congressional colleagues. The group called for a re-examination of the “flawed and discriminatory denial” of charitable status in this case. They also called for the removal of the IRS operative in charge of the matter.

One of the concerns of Roy and his colleagues is that this episode could set a dangerous precedent for other religious organizations. The standard the IRS used here could cause financial hardship for churches and Christian groups right across America. 

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