With fall approaching, the next election cycle is just around the corner – just in time for new IRS developments affecting churches and other religious institutions. As with all section 501(c)(3) organizations, religious institutions are prohibited from engaging in “political campaign activities.” That is, they may not advocate for or against a particular candidate for office, or otherwise seek to influence an election. For many, such restriction seems like a constitutional violation of First Amendment free speech and religious liberty protections. In recent years, IRS officials have ref
President Obama recently signed an executive order prohibiting federal contractors and subcontractors from engaging in employment decisions based on sexual orientation and gender identity. The President’s order amends previous executive orders regarding employment discrimination dating back to the 1960s, which were implemented to prevent racial discrimination in hiring and contracting decisions made by organizations receiving federal funding. Previously, the order prohibited employment decisions based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin. President Obama extended the order to
A Day to Reflect
Independence Day provides a great opportunity not only to light fireworks and the grill, but also to reflect on our country’s freedoms and values. The First Amendment has been front and center as of late. Our bedrock democratic values of political discourse, free speech, and religious expression have contributed incredibly and uniquely to the shaping of our pluralistic nation. They also strongly and increasingly influence laws affecting nonprofit organizations.