Skip to comments.IRS: Churches can't pray for Bush victory
Posted on 10/27/2004 10:50:56 PM PDT by hope
This is a WorldNetDaily printer-friendly version of the article which follows.
Thursday, October 28, 2004
TESTING THE FAITH
Posted: October 28, 2004
1:00 a.m. Eastern
By Ron Strom
In a letter of clarification requested by a traveling minister, the Internal Revenue Service has declared people gathered in tax-exempt churches can't pray for President Bush to win the election on Tuesday.
The ruling comes in response to a request by the Christian Defense Coalition, which is in the midst of a 15-day prayer tour through Ohio and Pennsylvania. The Rev. Patrick J. Mahoney, director of the organization, had planned to lead in prayer for a Bush victory during evening services in each town. Though he had hoped to hold the services in churches, Mahoney says he has used American Legion halls, hotels and other venues pending a clarification from the IRS.
The American Center for Law and Justice wrote the letter to the IRS on behalf of the Mahoney's group, explaining that the pastor planned to "offer prayer during the evening services in the churches he visits that God grants President Bush four more years as president and that Senator Kerry does not become president."
"This is rank censorship," Mahoney told WND. "If churches felt compelled to pray for Senator Kerry, they should be able to do that, too.
"Now we have the IRS not only limiting what can said behind a pulpit in terms of electioneering, but churches aren't even allowed to pray the dictates of their consciences."
Mahoney said he would consider legal action against the IRS, saying churches that had considered hosting the tour were unable to do so. He also said he considers his First Amendment rights to have been violated.
Reaction to the IRS ruling, Mahoney predicts, will include "massive anger" in the Christian community.
"Our organization, along with the American Center for Law and Justice, is going to make this a major issue," he said.
Mahoney considers the ruling a "much greater leap into censorship" than the prohibition on endorsing candidates from church pulpits.
"You hear people talk about the separation of church and state," he said. "This is a massive violation of the separation of church and state from the standpoint of the government intruding on the private dictates of churches."
Under IRS regulations, churches that are tax-exempt organizations cannot openly advocate for candidates for office and can only use a small percentage of their budgets on political activity.
As WorldNetDaily reported, an concerted effort is under way to get the IRS to crack down on churches that might push certain candidates or parties. In July, Americans United for Separation of Church and State, headed by Barry Lynn, filed a complaint with the IRS against Ronnie Floyd, pastor of the First Baptist Church of Springdale, Ark., accusing him of preaching a sermon promoting President Bush's re-election July 4.
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Ron Strom is a news editor for WorldNetDaily.com.
Now this is scary.
I had to read it twice...unbelievable!
Maybe the ACLU will take their case. Ok, maybe not.
The arrogance of the government can be truly staggering in scope.
Of course no one says a word when Democrats openly campaign in black churches.
Didn't you know that the only prayer allowed in churches is when black churches offer up prayers for a Kerry victory while he's preaching against Bush in their pulpit?
This is just a glimpse of what it will be like under a Kerry presidency.
More reason for Bush to dump the IRS.
Interesting flipside to this though... what about all those churches where Kerry shows up to campaign? They should lose their tax exempt status for similar reasons.
This is just plain dispicable. They can't get away with this...can they?
They should sue...
What part of "the free exercise thereof," is lost on the IRS.
Only if the people remain apathetic.
I will withhold judgment.
"In July, Americans United for Separation of Church and State, headed by Barry Lynn, filed a complaint with the IRS against Ronnie Floyd, pastor of the First Baptist Church of Springdale, Ark., accusing him of preaching a sermon promoting President Bush's re-election July 4."
All such suits have been tossed out of court summarily.
Yeah, how about those black churches?
So sick of the fact that the dems can get away with doing all the wrong things.
I bet that there are more people praying for President Bush than for the long face.
look at this!
We certainly CAN pray for Bush's re-election, and we're already doing so.
Want to challenge that prayer? Go ahead, watch the firestrom that erupts as it reaches the Supreme Court.
THEN CLOSE ALL THE CHURCHES
in which Kerry and/or other liberal idiot politician/traitors et al have spoken at--at length for decades!!!
THIS DOUBLE STANDARD NEEDS TO COME TO A SCREECHING HALT!
SUE THE OTHER TURKIES FOR ALL THEY ARE WORTH.
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