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Revoke tax-exempt status of "political" churches
  • Petitioned Internal Revenue Service

This petition was delivered to:

IRS EO Classification Section
Internal Revenue Service
President of the United States
U.S. Senate
U.S. House of Representatives

Revoke tax-exempt status of "political" churches

    1. Mike Daniels
    2. Petition by

      Mike Daniels

      Salem, OR

Most churches in the US are 501(c)(3) non-profit corporations.  When registering, they (and all other non-profits) agree to certain rules in exchange for tax exemption.  One rule is not to campaign for or against political candidates.

Every year, the Religious Right pushes "Pulpit Freedom Sunday". They encourage pastors to endorse candidates from the pulpit, in violation of the rules they voluntarily agreed to.

Last year, 539 pastors participated, sending videos of their political advocacy to the IRS. None received more response than a letter reminding them they shouldn't do such things, and telling them they were very, very naughty.

This year, 1,000 pastors have pledged to break the law and thumb their noses at IRS regulations. The agency's inaction has led to an increase in lawlessness.

It's time the IRS revoked tax-exempt status of those who refuse to follow the rules that come with this privilege. Last year, houses of worship in the US received a collective tax break of $25 billion, considering both income and local property taxes. This is a wonderful gift from US taxpayers, a subsidy that some pastors can't bring themselves to appreciate.

If they refuse to follow the rules, and instead flaunt their rulebreaking, they should lose this gift. Without tax-exempt status, they can preach in favor of candidates all they like . . . without being subsidized by the taxpayers.

This petition will be sent to the IRS, the President of the United States, and all Senators and Representatives.

Recent signatures

    News

    1. Reached 12,500 signatures

    Supporters

    Reasons for signing

    • Kali Hibbert EASLEY, SC
      • 9 months ago

      Though churches may preach religion they are still a business and should be taxed. The Church of Scientology collects many millions every year (they don't even claim to be non-profit) and they are still tax-exempt, where's the logic in that?

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    • carolyn ewell ALTAMONT, UT
      • 9 months ago

      LIving in Utah, as I do, I see up close and personally how political activity undertaken by churches skews political discourse and action. Freedom of religion and of speech are guaranteed, tax exempt status is not. If a church can't follow the rules, they should lose their tax advantage.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
      • 9 months ago

      Churches should be taxed in the same way that any other corporate entity, as should the pastors who run them as long as they are paid by the church congregation for their services.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Angela Sivilli SINGAPORE, SINGAPORE
      • 9 months ago

      We can no longer afford to provide tax breaks to churches that break the law.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Matthew Sanchez CACHE, OK
      • 10 months ago

      Separation of church and state is a LAW. Keep them out of where they dont belong. and punish those who think they do.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:

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