HOME > NEWSROOM > ARTICLES > Republican Leaders Rail Against IRS Non-Profit Proposal

Republican Leaders Rail Against IRS Non-Profit Proposal

As Internal Revenue Service Commissioner John Koskinen sat before members of the House Ways and Means Committee this week, hot on the agenda was a proposed IRS rulemaking that would restrict the activities of certain tax-exempt groups in the same class as those that were victims in the IRS targeting controversy last year.

In his prepared remarks, Commissioner Koskinen, who took over leadership of the IRS in December, stated, “Another priority for our agency is to put to rest all of the issues and concerns surrounding applications for tax-exempt status. Taxpayers need to be confident that the IRS will treat them fairly, no matter what their background or their affiliations. Public trust is the IRS’ most important and valuable asset.” Regarding the political and social welfare activities of 501 (c)(4) organizations, he highlighted the importance of clarity both for IRS enforcement and the relevant organizations’ own administrative purposes.  He also noted, “The proposed guidance also seeks comments regarding whether standards similar to those that have been proposed should be adopted to define the political activities that do not further the tax-exempt purposes of other tax-exempt organizations and to promote consistent definitions across the tax-exempt sector.”

However, House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp (R-MI), highlighting the continuing investigation of last year’s IRS targeting scandal, declared: “I want to be perfectly clear – this Committee will fight any and all efforts to restrict the rights of groups to organize, speak-out and educate the public, just as unions are allowed to do so…. I believe the IRS has a long way to go in restoring its credibility.  But, you can take a first step by complying with this Committee’s request and stopping all action against 501(c)(4) groups until the appropriate investigations are completed.” Chairman Camp last month introduced legislation to block this IRS rulemaking proceeding.

Senior Republican leaders in both the House and Senate, including House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) and Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), co-authored a letter expressing similar alarm at the IRS rulemaking. Urging abandonment of the proceeding, they stated, “This proposed rule is an affront to free speech itself. It poses a serious and undeniable threat to the ability of ordinary Americans to freely participate in the democratic process.”

  • Watch this week’s House Ways and Means Committee hearing here.

By Aaron Mercer, Vice President of Government Relations

Published: February 7, 2014

Latest News

NRB President Supports Senator Cruz on Israel Following IDC Event

Dr. Jerry A. Johnson, President & CEO of NRB, sent a letter today to Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) following the disrespectful treatment he received for expressing solidarity with Israel at a recent “In Defense of Christians” event.

NRB Speaks Out for First Amendment Rights

NRB could not be silent this week in the face of a serious threat to the Bill of Rights being considered by the U.S. Senate.

Rep. Frank Wolf Receives NRB Faith & Freedom Award

At its annual President’s Council Capitol Hill Media Summit this week, NRB presented the 2014 Faith & Freedom Award to Congressman Frank Wolf (R-VA).

FCC Oversight Hearing Next Week

Next week, a House panel will conduct an oversight hearing on the FCC, specifically attending to management and spending at the agency.

Former FCC Commissioner Joins New Firm

Former FCC Commissioner Robert McDowell (R) this week transitioned from the Hudson Institute to the Washington law firm Wiley Rein.

NRB Congratulates 2014 CMB Award Winners

Three NRB members were recognized with awards from Christian Music Broadcasters (CMB) last week during the annual CMB Networking Dinner held at Momentum 2014.

Reach Thousands of Christian Communicators: Sponsor or Promote at the NRB15 Convention

NRB's International Christian Media Convention represents the world’s largest gathering of Christian communicators and offers organizations unique opportunities to reach thousands of media and ministry professionals.

Pacific Garden Mission Debuts TV Series on TLN

Pacific Garden Mission (PGM), the oldest, continuously-operating, Gospel rescue mission in the country, has begun airing its own show on Total Living Network (TLN).

'Moms’ Night Out' Now Out on DVD

The endearing true-to-life family comedy Moms' Night Out was released on DVD and Blu-ray last week and has been touted as a “must have” for fans of faith-based movies.

NRB to Hold Internet Freedom Panel

A former FCC Commissioner and a top executive from Amazon will be featured in a panel event next week being held by NRB in Washington, DC.

More News