"Dear God, please allow the IRS to attack my church, so I can take them all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court."

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Jim's picture

His prayer: "please allow the IRS to attack my church"

It may just happen. Consequences may be


  • Neither of the above consequences are all bad!
  • I would hope (but I am probably being naive) that one does not give to a church for the deduction!
  • But I think it is unethical to claim the one ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/501%28c%29#501.28c.29.283.29 ]501(c)(3) ) without following the rules of the same!

My own view is that I just don't see this kind of politicking as necessary.

I would hope that every Christian would understand that God's definition of marriage is a man with a woman.

Wouldn't it be sufficient to have the biannual "reminder to vote" message like this

  • Be aware of the issues [sup ]1[/sup ]
  • Investigate the candidates and know their positions [sup ]2[/sup ]
  • Vote biblically
  1. I think it is completely proper to mention "the issues". Abortion, gay marriage, etc
  2. A voter guide is available in the foyer (a good approach)
Jim's picture

http://www.startribune.com/politics/105058109.html Pastors plan to endorse political candidates

Two Minnesota clergymen plan to thumb their noses at the federal government Sunday by endorsing political candidates from their pulpits.

In doing so, they hope the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) will come after them, allowing them to wage a legal fight asserting their First Amendment right of freedom of speech.

"I'm going to violate the law and challenge it because I believe it to be entirely unconstitutional," said the Rev. Brad Brandon, pastor of the http://www.bereanbiblebaptistchurch.com/ Berean Bible Baptist Church in Hastings. "I'd like to see something happen so I can get my free speech rights restored."

Jim's picture

http://minnesotaindependent.com/72610/americans-united-files-complaint-a... ]Americans United files IRS complaint against church that endorsed Emmer

Americans United for the Separation of Church and State filed a complaint with the Internal Revenue Service Monday against Hastings’ Berean Bible Baptist Church and its pastor, Brad Brandon, for violating the ban on tax-exempt churches endorsing candidates. Brandon endorsed a slate of conservative candidates during his Sunday sermon after challenging the “liberal media” to report on his activities. AU urged the IRS to “investigate this matter and fully enforce our laws.”

AU cited the Minnesota Independent’s reporting on Brandon’s threats to endorse and his actual endorsement on Sunday.

“I believe this evidence indicates that the church violated federal law — and did so knowingly,” wrote the Rev. Barry W. Lynn, executive director of AU. “In fact, Pastor Brandon — the top official at the church — does not deny this and seems eager to be investigated by the IRS.”

On Sunday, Brandon endorsed Republican gubernatorial candidate Tom Emmer, Republican Dan Severson for Secretary of State, Republican Chris Barden for Attorney General and Republican Pat Anderson for State Auditor. He also endorsed Republican Randy Demmer in Minnesota’s First Congressional District, Rep. John Kline in Minnesota’s Second, Republican Teresa Collett in the Fourth, Rep. Michele Bachmann in the Sixth, and Lee Byberg in the Seventh. His two non-GOP nods went to independent Lynne Torgerson in the Fifth Congressional District and Constitution Party candidate Richard “George” Burton in the Eighth.

Brandon had been threatening the endorsements for a week on his radio program. To the “liberal media” he said, “Little immature human beings that are so wrapped up in your emotions that you couldn’t make a rational decision if it killed you, so please make this one decision for me — do it based on emotion. Do it out of hatred for me. File a complaint against mean old Pastor Brandon who is going to come out and endorse candidates.”

According to Rob Boston, senior policy analyst for AU, there’s a wide range of consequences that can occur when a non-profit endorses a candidate.

“All non-profit groups holding the 501(c)(3) designation — which includes houses of worship — may not intervene in elections by endorsing or opposing candidates for public office,” he said. “Those who violate the law can lose their tax exemption, be audited, be fined or suffer lesser penalties, such as warnings from the IRS.”

Jack's picture

I have to believe the pastor is ignorant as to the expense involved in an IRS investigation, a trial court case, an appellate court case, and a Supreme Court appeal. Not that the Supreme Court would ever grant cert on a case this straightforward. Of course, in his favor, costs should be minimized by the open and shut nature of his violation.