BETTER UTAH JOINS LETTER URGING PRESERVATION OF JOHNSON AMENDMENT

Salt Lake City, UT – The good-government group, Alliance for a Better Utah, along with 86 other organizations, has joined in signing a letter urging President Trump to oppose repealing the Johnson Amendment – a law that prohibits 501(c)(3) organizations from intervening in partisan politics.

Last month, President Donald J. Trump promised those at the National Prayer Breakfast to “totally destroy” the Johnson Amendment. The Johnson Amendment has acted to protect the integrity of charities and places of worship — ensuring that charitable giving is not used for political purposes. Without this rule, these entities could be susceptible to being used as funnels for the funding of elections. Repealing the Johnson Amendment would essentially build a bridge between our nation’s historic separation of church and state.

Chase Thomas, Better Utah’s policy and advocacy counsel, issued the following statement:

“Although many Americans share a belief in religion or spirituality, from the beginning of our nation, our government has recognized both the freedom of religion and the separation of church and state. The tax code uses charitable deductions to encourage philanthropic giving but it also denies that preferential treatment to those who wish to advocate in a partisan manner. Organizations have the choice to avoid partisan activities and avail themselves of the tax benefits of that choice or to engage in partisan activities and forego the benefit of charitable deductions. We believe this is a reasonable choice and one that is embodied in the Johnson Amendment. We urge President Trump to reconsider his position on the Johnson Amendment and we urge Utah’s congressional delegation to oppose any repeal of the Johnson Amendment.”

Read the letter here: http://www.citizen.org/documents/protect-the-johnson-amendment-letter-march-2017.pdf.

The Alliance for a Better Utah is a 501(c)(4) non-profit organization that does not receive the benefit of tax-deductible contributions. Our affiliated organization, the ABU Education Fund, is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that does receive tax-deductible contributions pursuant to the provisions of the Internal Revenue Code.

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