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Religious groups have the right to speak out on political and social issues. Federal law, however, prohibits most tax-exempt bodies, including houses of worship, from intervening in elections by endorsing or opposing candidates for public office. Churches are not political action committees and should not act like them. Religious leaders should abide by the law and refrain from turning their congregations into cogs in a political machine.

Project Fairplay

In 1996, Americans United launched Project Fair Play to educate religious leaders and other Americans about tax exemption and political activity. We send informational letters to clergy, and we file complaints with the IRS when there are egregious violations.

Please visit Project Fair Play to learn more.
 


 

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Blogs
Most Recent Blog Posts
All the most recent posts from AU's Wall of Separation Blog & The Protect Thy Neighbor Blog

A Big Loss For Vouchers In The Lone Star State

Texas is one of the more conservative states in the country. Over the years, Lone Star State legislators have cooked up some pretty bad church-state legislation.

Voucher legislation is common in the Texas legislature, but even in this redder than red state, the bills usually fail to gain traction. This year’s session has given us a new twist: the lieutenant governor’s hard push for vouchers prompted the House to pass a proposal to bar the funding of private school vouchers.

In A Suburban Chicago School Board Race, Transgender Rights Won

A suburban Chicago school board race this spring was seen as a referendum on transgender rights. According to Tuesday’s unofficial election results, transgender rights won.

Over a year ago, the school board for Township High School District 211 in the Palatine-Schaumburg area northwest of Chicago approved a settlement with the U.S. Department of Education to allow transgender students to use the restrooms and locker rooms consistent with their gender identity.

Faith Groups Urge Congress To Protect The Integrity Of Houses Of Worship By Maintaining Johnson Amendment

This morning, 99 religious and denominational organizations sent a letter to Congress supporting the Johnson Amendment, which is the law that protects tax-exempt houses of worship by ensuring they do not endorse or oppose candidates. The letter also urged members of the House and Senate to reject calls from President Donald Trump to repeal or weaken the law.

Voters Across Party Lines Agree: Leave The Johnson Amendment Alone

As Congress and President Donald Trump gear up to tackle tax reform, they’d be wise to pay attention to the majority of Americans who don’t want tax-exempt organizations, including houses of worship, to endorse or oppose political candidates.

Anti-Sharia Bills: Another Harmful Consequence of Anti-Muslim Sentiment

During his campaign for office, President Donald J. Trump laced many of his speeches with anti-Muslim rhetoric and vowed to ban Muslim refugees and immigrants. And just a few days into office, he signed an order imposing a Muslim ban.

But there are more harmful consequences that have come from the anti-Muslim sentiment he stoked. We’ve seen an uptick in anti-Muslim hate crimes. And now state legislatures across the country are pushing harmful bills.

Ten Commandments Monument Removed From Pittsburgh-Area Public High School

I recently heard some interesting news from my hometown in suburban Pittsburgh: A Ten Commandments monument that was the subject of a federal court battle has been removed from the grounds of a public high school.

Pages

Most Recent Blog Posts
All the most recent posts from AU's Wall of Separation Blog & The Protect Thy Neighbor Blog

A Big Loss For Vouchers In The Lone Star State

Texas is one of the more conservative states in the country. Over the years, Lone Star State legislators have cooked up some pretty bad church-state legislation.

Voucher legislation is common in the Texas legislature, but even in this redder than red state, the bills usually fail to gain traction. This year’s session has given us a new twist: the lieutenant governor’s hard push for vouchers prompted the House to pass a proposal to bar the funding of private school vouchers.

In A Suburban Chicago School Board Race, Transgender Rights Won

A suburban Chicago school board race this spring was seen as a referendum on transgender rights. According to Tuesday’s unofficial election results, transgender rights won.

Over a year ago, the school board for Township High School District 211 in the Palatine-Schaumburg area northwest of Chicago approved a settlement with the U.S. Department of Education to allow transgender students to use the restrooms and locker rooms consistent with their gender identity.

Faith Groups Urge Congress To Protect The Integrity Of Houses Of Worship By Maintaining Johnson Amendment

This morning, 99 religious and denominational organizations sent a letter to Congress supporting the Johnson Amendment, which is the law that protects tax-exempt houses of worship by ensuring they do not endorse or oppose candidates. The letter also urged members of the House and Senate to reject calls from President Donald Trump to repeal or weaken the law.

Voters Across Party Lines Agree: Leave The Johnson Amendment Alone

As Congress and President Donald Trump gear up to tackle tax reform, they’d be wise to pay attention to the majority of Americans who don’t want tax-exempt organizations, including houses of worship, to endorse or oppose political candidates.

Anti-Sharia Bills: Another Harmful Consequence of Anti-Muslim Sentiment

During his campaign for office, President Donald J. Trump laced many of his speeches with anti-Muslim rhetoric and vowed to ban Muslim refugees and immigrants. And just a few days into office, he signed an order imposing a Muslim ban.

But there are more harmful consequences that have come from the anti-Muslim sentiment he stoked. We’ve seen an uptick in anti-Muslim hate crimes. And now state legislatures across the country are pushing harmful bills.

Ten Commandments Monument Removed From Pittsburgh-Area Public High School

I recently heard some interesting news from my hometown in suburban Pittsburgh: A Ten Commandments monument that was the subject of a federal court battle has been removed from the grounds of a public high school.

Pages

Most Recent Blog Posts
All the most recent posts from AU's Wall of Separation Blog & The Protect Thy Neighbor Blog

A Big Loss For Vouchers In The Lone Star State

Texas is one of the more conservative states in the country. Over the years, Lone Star State legislators have cooked up some pretty bad church-state legislation.

Voucher legislation is common in the Texas legislature, but even in this redder than red state, the bills usually fail to gain traction. This year’s session has given us a new twist: the lieutenant governor’s hard push for vouchers prompted the House to pass a proposal to bar the funding of private school vouchers.

In A Suburban Chicago School Board Race, Transgender Rights Won

A suburban Chicago school board race this spring was seen as a referendum on transgender rights. According to Tuesday’s unofficial election results, transgender rights won.

Over a year ago, the school board for Township High School District 211 in the Palatine-Schaumburg area northwest of Chicago approved a settlement with the U.S. Department of Education to allow transgender students to use the restrooms and locker rooms consistent with their gender identity.

Faith Groups Urge Congress To Protect The Integrity Of Houses Of Worship By Maintaining Johnson Amendment

This morning, 99 religious and denominational organizations sent a letter to Congress supporting the Johnson Amendment, which is the law that protects tax-exempt houses of worship by ensuring they do not endorse or oppose candidates. The letter also urged members of the House and Senate to reject calls from President Donald Trump to repeal or weaken the law.

Voters Across Party Lines Agree: Leave The Johnson Amendment Alone

As Congress and President Donald Trump gear up to tackle tax reform, they’d be wise to pay attention to the majority of Americans who don’t want tax-exempt organizations, including houses of worship, to endorse or oppose political candidates.

Anti-Sharia Bills: Another Harmful Consequence of Anti-Muslim Sentiment

During his campaign for office, President Donald J. Trump laced many of his speeches with anti-Muslim rhetoric and vowed to ban Muslim refugees and immigrants. And just a few days into office, he signed an order imposing a Muslim ban.

But there are more harmful consequences that have come from the anti-Muslim sentiment he stoked. We’ve seen an uptick in anti-Muslim hate crimes. And now state legislatures across the country are pushing harmful bills.

Ten Commandments Monument Removed From Pittsburgh-Area Public High School

I recently heard some interesting news from my hometown in suburban Pittsburgh: A Ten Commandments monument that was the subject of a federal court battle has been removed from the grounds of a public high school.

Pages

Press Releases
Church & State
June 2017 Church & State

Out Of Order

Trump’s New ‘Religious Freedom’ Directives Set The Stage For Attacks On Real Liberty, Says Americans United

February 2017 Church & State

Prayers Or Politics?

President Donald Trump Wants To Allow Houses Of Worship To Intervene In Partisan Elections Yet Remain Tax Exempt

January 2017 Church & State

Snake Oil Solution

Why Repealing The Ban On Pulpit Politicking Is A Colossally Bad Idea

December 2016 Church & State

Payback Time

Donald Trump Won the White House With Strong Support From Religious Right Groups. What Will They Get In Return?

November 2016 Church & State

Pulpit Politicking Panned

Americans United Reminds Faith Leaders To Focus On Issues, Not Candidates