The Johnson Amendment was passed in the 1950’s without hearing or testimony to specifically shut down political efforts by a nonprofit (NOT A CHURCH) supporting an opponent of then Sen Lyndon Johnson. Using the laughable excuse that foundations and nonprofits were being infiltrated by communists, it shut the door on nonprofits engaging in elections.
For-profit companies have always enjoyed that right, and in Citizen’s United, their ability to both get federal subsidies (akin to nonprofit tax breaks) AND engage in first amendment political activities was affirmed. I do worry about church and state separation, but for rank and file nonprofits, this would finally allow us the same rights (and responsibilities) as any other business in America.
Once again….the mere idea of nonprofits being engaged in politics is being opposed by “leadership” groups like NCNA. Seriously…read these actual quotes that men, AND WOMEN used to challenge suffrage and the power of the 19th Amendment, then read the cowardly, boring excuses of NCNA. It would be funny if it wasn’t so fucking wrong.
1. “There is…no method known by which mud-stained reputation may be cleaned after bitter political campaigns.”
2.”Because it is unwise to risk the good we already have for the evil which may occur.”
3. “It means competition of women with men instead of co-operation.”
4. “The right to vote would destroy the family and increase the number of “socialist”-type voters.”
5.” Let her be content with her lot and perform those high duties intended for her by the Great Creator, and she will
accomplish far more in governmental affairs that she can ever accomplish by mixing up in the dirty pool of politics.”
Listen….shutting down ANY debate is lame. You may not like the idea, but if it could mean a more just and fair opportunity for nonprofits, then LEAD OR LEAVE,