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View Diary: Groups targeted by IRS pushed political activity boundaries (135 comments)

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  •  Where does opinion mention NAACP tax break ? (4+ / 0-)

    This paragraph indicates that the tax status of the NAACP was not an issue:

    Alabama has a statute, similar to those of many other States, which requires a foreign corporation, except as exempted, to qualify before doing business by filing its corporate charter with the Secretary of State and designating a place of business and an agent to receive service of process. The statute imposes a fine on a corporation transacting intrastate business before qualifying, and provides for criminal prosecution of officers of such a corporation. Ala.Code, 1940, Tit. 10, §§ 192-198. The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People is a nonprofit membership corporation organized under the laws of New York. Its purposes, fostered on a nationwide basis, are those indicated by its name, * and it operates
    Page 357 U. S. 452
    through chartered affiliates which are independent unincorporated associations, with membership therein equivalent to membership in petitioner. The first Alabama affiliates were chartered in 1918. Since that time, the aims of the Association have been advanced through activities of its affiliates, and, in 1951, the Association itself opened a regional office in Alabama, at which it employed two supervisory persons and one clerical worker. The Association has never complied with the qualification statute, from which it considered itself exempt.

    In 1956, the Attorney General of Alabama brought an equity suit in the State Circuit Court, Montgomery County, to enjoin the Association from conducting further activities within, and to oust it from, the State. Among other things, the bill in equity alleged that the Association had opened a regional office and had organized various affiliates in Alabama; had recruited members and solicited contributions within the State; had given financial support and furnished legal assistance to Negro students seeking admission to the state university, and had supported a Negro boycott of the bus lines in Montgomery to compel the seating of passengers without regard to race. The bill recited that the Association, by continuing to do business in Alabama without complying with the qualification statute, was
    ". . . causing irreparable injury to the property and civil rights of the residents and citizens of the State of Alabama for which criminal prosecution and civil actions at law afford no adequate relief. . . ."

    The IRS wanted to know whether teabaggers are advocacy organizations (which many of them clearly are) that are not entitled to tax exemptions.  The AL AG was making no such inquiry.  Facile analogies coupled w/ personal insult really add little to this discussion.

    Some men see things as they are and ask why. I dream of things that never were and ask why not?

    by RFK Lives on Tue May 28, 2013 at 03:39:36 PM PDT

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    •  You're not making sense (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      VClib

      Advocacy organizations are entitled to tax exemptions under 501c4 unless electoral advocacy is their primary purpose.

      What is the governmental interest served by making all contributors to Human Rights Campaign public?

      •  Perhaps you might re-read the diary above (5+ / 0-)

        Let's start at the beginning w/ relevant excerpts from a superb diary:

        When CVFC, a conservative veterans’ group in California, applied for tax-exempt status with the Internal Revenue Service, its biggest expenditure that year was several thousand dollars in radio ads backing a Republican candidate for Congress.

        The Wetumpka Tea Party, from Alabama, sponsored training for a get-out-the-vote initiative dedicated to the “defeat of President Barack Obama” while the I.R.S. was weighing its application.

        And the head of the Ohio Liberty Coalition, whose application languished with the I.R.S. for more than two years, sent out e-mails to members about Mitt Romney campaign events and organized members to distribute Mr. Romney’s presidential campaign literature.

        Perhaps you feel differently, but there are at least 3 such organizations expressly cited by the diarist that one just might argue have electoral advocacy as their primary purpose.  In my experience, at least, lit drops and radio ads for candidates constitute such advocacy.

        Your original comment analogized CVFC, the Wetumpka Tea Party, and the OH Liberty Coalition to the NAACP.  I responded by noting that the only thing that the 3 former groups have in common w/ the latter group is that all of their members walk upright.  You've never posted anything that rebuts my response.

        Some men see things as they are and ask why. I dream of things that never were and ask why not?

        by RFK Lives on Tue May 28, 2013 at 04:17:21 PM PDT

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      •  Adam B, WRONG. You don't know the LAW. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        doroma

        The law has been cited to you repeatedly.  Please pay attention:

        [/quote](4)
        (A) Civic leagues or organizations not organized for profit but operated exclusively for the promotion of social welfare, or local associations of employees, the membership of which is limited to the employees of a designated person or persons in a particular municipality, and the net earnings of which are devoted exclusively to charitable, educational, or recreational purposes.
        (B) Subparagraph (A) shall not apply to an entity unless no part of the net earnings of such entity inures to the benefit of any private shareholder or individual.[/quote]

        Advocacy organizations are not entitled to tax exemptions under 501c4 unless they are operated exclusively for the promosion of social welfare.  EXCLUSIVELY.

        The IRS regulations from the 1950s are another matter -- but the IRS regulations are illegal, because they convert "exclusively" into "primarily".

        The IRS does not have the right to rewrite the law by regulation.

        I ask again, who has standing to sue to overturn the illegal regulations from the 1950s?  

        Really, we all ought to have standing, but the courts have repeatedly decided that diffuse harm to all of us doesn't give anyone standing.

        •  I practice this area of law for a living. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          VClib

          The IRS has given a reasonable definition of the term "exclusively" consistent with contemporaneous Supreme Court precedent, as this CRS report reviews.

        •  deep info - the Revenue Act of 1950 (0+ / 0-)

          which established the principle of Unrelated Business Income Tax for 501 corporations contained language which conflicted with the "exclusive" test for 501 c 4s. As explained this morning by the former head of the Tax Exempt Division of the IRS, when he appeared on CSPAN this morning, after the conflicting legislation was passed the IRS changed the rule to "primarily" and Congress was comfortable with that as a guideline. My guess is that this negates any reason to file a lawsuit against Congress or the IRS.  

          "let's talk about that"

          by VClib on Wed May 29, 2013 at 04:07:23 PM PDT

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