Is it wrong for pastors to endorse a particular political candidate? How about church members passing out pamphlets on abortion or same-sex marriage when there's an upcoming vote on these issues?
The Internal Revenue Service recently announced a crackdown on political activities by churches. Standing laws prohibit certain political activities by tax-exempt organizations, including supporting one political party or candidate.
The IRS is also taking issue with churches that engage in activities that favor a particular candidate including: inviting only one candidate to address their congregation, publicly commending a candidate, or highlighting a group of political issues that are obviously espoused by a particular candidate.
The tax code allows churches to register voters and express views on political issues.
Meanwhile, a coalition of nonprofit conservative groups is planning to enlist help from Pennsylvania pastors in getting voters to the November elections.
1) Are churches too political, or not political enough?
2) Should churches be able to endorse or support a particular candidate? Why or why not?
Pastors' Get-Out-the-Vote Training Could Test Tax Rules