The key news this election day are the challenges presented to non-profit foundations who are supposed to be non-partisan, yet find themselves accused of running afoul of IRS guidelines for tax exempt organizations:
– JZ Knight, Lawyer Question Think-Tanks Tax-Exempt Status
An attorney for JZ Knight has sent a complaint to the IRS alleging an Olympia think-tank has violated the conditions of its tax-exempt status.
The attorney claims the Freedom Foundation a right-leaning think-tank currently embroiled in litigation with Knights company, JZK, Inc. violated its 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status by supporting partisan candidates and causes. The Freedom Foundation denies the allegation.
Brooke Johnson, an attorney specializing in nonprofits and intellectual property who has been retained by Knight and JZK, Inc., filed the complaint with the IRS on Oct. 24, according to a press release from the company. The complaint alleges the foundation has engaged in sharply partisan activities, which have included intervention in a number of political campaigns. Those partisan activities, Johnson alleges, are outside the scope of a 501(c)(3) organization,” quoting Steven Wyble in the Nisqually Valley News.
As a non-profit, tax exempt organization, the Freedom Foundation is supposed to be non-partisan, yet
they admit partisan politics, even condemning our area’s State Rep. Randi Becker, a Republican, from Wyble’s story.
– “Right-wing groups tax-free status challenged”
“But this years hiring of longtime Republican Party operative Tom McCabe as the Foundations new CEO has freshly blurred the lines of whats educational and whats political. For example, last month McCabe was advancing ideas as the headline speaker at a campaign fundraiser for Republican Rep. Matt Shea in Colbert, Wash.
The ideas the Foundation is allowed to advance may include voter education, according to IRS rules. However, if those activities have the effect of favoring a candidate or group of candidates, (it) will constitute prohibited participation or intervention.
As reported here at The Stand, the Freedom Foundation has openly bragged on its website and in its fundraising emails that its goal is to defund and discredit the union political machine and to take on unions and their political allies via lawsuits. Attempting to defund the union political machine would certainly have the effect of favoring a candidate or group of candidates specifically, any candidate(s) opposed by unions and would therefore be a prohibited activity for a legitimate 501(c)(3) organization,”
quoting David Groves, The Stand.
– Pastor Jeff Adams has been riding the razor’s edge of his church’s tax exempt, non-partisan status.
“Christians Can Influence Politics, Election Results”
was the subject of Adams’ Finding Reason column in the Nisqually Valley News this week. He has been very aggressive for a decade in his attacks in local elections and political issues.
Yelm Community Blogger Steve Klein has been employed Ramtha’s School of Enlightenment since October 2003 and a student of Ramtha’s since February 1986.