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Action Alert: Join Us in Protecting Nonprofit Nonpartisanship

by Jennifer Gray

Last month, President Trump announced his intention to repeal the Johnson Amendment–a law that clearly prevents charitable nonprofits, including religious institutions and foundations, from using their charitable assets for political contributions and endorsing candidates for elective office. There are several bills pending in the U.S. Congress that would eliminate or significantly weaken the amendment, undermining nonprofit nonpartisanship.

Joining dozens of colleagues nationwide, the Maine Association of Nonprofits has announced opposition to efforts to repeal or weaken the Johnson Amendment. 

“Nonprofit organizations are best able to advance their missions when they are nonpartisan,” said Jennifer Hutchins, MANP Executive Director. “Nonpartisan 501(c)(3) nonprofits are able to serve as true problem solvers working in partnership with government and other community stakeholders with shared values and a common vision that moves well beyond any current political cycle.

“The Johnson Amendment does not unfairly limit the speech of churches or nonprofits. Religious institutions and other nonprofit organizations that want to give up their public charity status are free to expend their funds for or against political candidates and partisan election activity and keep their tax exempt status as a (c)(4), or Section 527 organization.”

The Maine Association of Nonprofits urges Maine’s Congressional delegation to reject these proposed changes and prioritize the many other issues impacting our communities.

What You Can Do

We encourage community members to join us in opposing these efforts by signing a community letter in support of nonpartisanship and sharing the letter with networks. The deadline to add your organization’s name is March 20.

The National Council of Nonprofits has additional information on its website.

2 thoughts on “Action Alert: Join Us in Protecting Nonprofit Nonpartisanship

Steven Mortimer says:

I strongly support the separation of church and state, including keeping nonprofit monies out of politics.

[…] the nonprofit sector as a whole have come out strongly against this bill, including the Maine Association of Nonprofits, the Independent Sector and the National Council on Nonprofits.  At press time it was not clear if […]

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