The state of American politics cannot be accurately summed up in words. Right now, the United States government has become such a divisive institution that the very President of the United States is waging war against law and order. This past May, President Trump issued an executive order which targeted the Johnson Amendment. The Johnson Amendment was put on the books in 1954 in a bipartisan effort between Lyndon B Johnson and Dwight Eisenhower. The goal of the Johnson Amendment, originally introduced as the Johnson Act, was to further separate church and state. Religious institutions would be allowed to sign up for tax-exemption in exchange for their refusal to do any sort of political lobbying or fundraising. The goal here was to help lower-funded organizations and religious institutions in return for their promise to stay clean out of government affairs. For over 50 years the Johnson Amendment stood safely on the books of our laws and regulations but now it is in danger.
President Trump and House Republicans have already signed off on a tax reform bill that would put the Johnson Amendment in major danger. The reason that House Republicans are going all in on repealing the Johnson Amendment is simple. Tiffany Muller, head of the political action committee End Citizens United, stated it simply: by repealing the Johnson Amendment, Republicans are turning churches into a way to funnel dark money into politics. With the Johnson Amendment off of the books, lobbyists would be able to donate massive sums of money to religious institutions who would then put those dollars into the pockets of politicians in Washington D.C. To kick things to another level, those same rich lobbyists would also get to write off their religious donation against their taxes. The goal here is simple and plain, more dark money in politics and less accountability around the top of the ring.
End Citizens United is a political action committee that has been single-minded in their focus to champion campaign finance reform. Initially established to try and repeal the disastrous Citizens United ruling, which allowed for fewer regulations among donors and lobbyists, End Citizens United has expanded their scope to also support the Johnson Amendment. Tiffany Muller knows that repealing the Johnson Amendment is just another way for the wealthy to funnel their money in order to subvert the will of the American people. Muller believes that if the Johnson Amendment is stripped off all its’ teeth, religious institutions will become THE go-to way to funnel tax-free money into the realm of American politics. With lobbyists already controlling Washington D.C., should they really have another avenue to push their money into subverting the will of American voters around the entire country? Learn more:https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/end-citizens-united