News reports indicate that a deal on tax reform has been reached in principal, however the details are still being negotiated. Conference Committee members are trying to avoid unnecessary provisions that would make the tax plan more unpopular. Therefore, the nonprofit community needs to emphasize quickly that Section 5201 of the House tax plan is strongly opposed by the general public, nonprofits, and houses of worship.
Can you advocate? Yes, you can!! We know that many nonprofits are uncertain about whether they can engage in activities like this. In this case, nonprofit boards, staff, and other supporters can make these calls because there is a provision for nonprofit organizations to lobby in cases of self-defense for the organization. Read on to learn how you can use 5 minutes to be heard today.
Section 5201 of the House-passed tax reform bill would repeal the Johnson Amendment, which requires nonpartisanship among charitable organizations. Section 5201 would allow political operatives to pressure charitable organizations to endorse or oppose candidates, and powerful donors to exert pressure by giving or threatening to withhold donations to get organizations to endorse or oppose candidates the donors prefer. The proposed change would also make political donations tax-deductible when funneled through charitable nonprofits, houses of worship, and foundations. You can learn more about the negative effects of the tax reform proposal in this article from Real Change News.
Washington State can make a difference! Senators Cantwell and Murray are conferees for the Conference Committee tasked with reconciling the House and Senate tax bills. Additionally, House members have not heard enough from constituents on this issue.
Call and Deliver this Message to Your Representatives and Our Senators:
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“I’m a constituent and I’m calling in opposition to a very harmful provision in the tax bill that would weaken the Johnson Amendment and politicize charitable nonprofits and houses of worship, and foundations against our strong opposition. The harmful provision is Section 5201 of the House-passed tax bill that is now in a conference committee with the Senate. It is imperative thatSenator/Representative [NAME] reach out to every member of the conference committee and tell them the Johnson Amendment language in the House bill must be stripped from the final bill. Thank you.”
Tweet This To Your Representative and Our Senators
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Section 5201 of the House #taxreform bill harms #nonprofits serving WA communities. @SenatorCantwell @PattyMurray [add your Representative’s Twitter handle] please work with the Conference Committee to strike Section 5201 so that nonprofits can focus on mission, not partisan politics. #JohnsonAmendment
Forward This Action Alert Widely
We need as many nonprofit staff, board members, and consumers as possible calling their members of Congress on this critical issue. Please share this message with your networks.