Tell Your Representative to Stop the IRS from Silencing the Grassroots
As one of our millions of FreedomWorks members nationwide, I urge you to contact your Representative today and urge him or her to support H.R. 3865, the Stop Targeting of Political Beliefs by the IRS Act, and to co-sponsor the bill if he or she has not already done so.
After the revelations that the IRS specifically targeted and harassed conservative group seeking non-profit status, the IRS should have put countermeasures in place to ensure that such abuses cannot happen again. Instead, the IRS has proposed to solve the problem by issuing a new proposed rule that would prevent any group given the 501(c)4 tax-exempt status from engaging in almost any political activities whatsoever.
501(c)4 non-profit groups have conducted voter education and get-out-the-vote activities for decades – the grassroots equivalent of the 501(c)5 and 501(c)6 groups that conduct similar activities for labor unions and business associations, respectively. This new regulation would stop (c)4 groups from even mentioning the name of a candidate who is running for office, from holding non-partisan candidate forums, and even from conducting voter registration drives. These restrictions would not only make the sort of voter education that these non-profit groups have always done impossible, it could also prohibit them from opining on the voting records and conduct of members of Congress during election years.
H.R. 3865, sponsored by Rep. Dave Camp (R-MI), would prevent the IRS from promulgating this or similar regulations for a year, while his House Ways & Means Committee continues to investigate the IRS targeting of political groups.
If there was any doubt as to the intent of the proposed regulation, IRS emails were recently revealed showing that the process of developing rule to curb political speech in 501(c)4 organizations were developed in secret by the IRS official who oversaw the targeted IRS harassment of tea party groups. Such a blatant abuse of power – and of our right to political free speech – by the IRS cannot be tolerated.
Thus, I urge you to contact your representative today and ask him or her to co-sponsor and support the Stop Targeting of Political Beliefs by the IRS Act, H.R. 3865.
President and CEO,