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Preaching Politics from the pulpit. Is it against the Law?

Religious groups have the right to speak out on political and social issues. Federal law, however, prohibits most tax-exempt bodies, including houses of worship, from intervening in elections by endorsing or opposing candidates for public office. Churches are not political action committees and should not act like them. Religious leaders should abide by the law and refrain from turning their congregations into cogs in a political machine. ~Americans United

Answer Question

Asked by IhartU at 2:11 PM on Oct. 21, 2013 in Religious Debate

Level 27 (31,412 Credits)
Answers (7)
  • Actually speaking out for or against a political candidate can result in a church losing its tax-exempt status. It may be crystal clear what political stance the church or its leaders take, but most of them refrain from directly telling their members how to vote and so stay within the law, if only by a hair.

    Answer by Ballad at 2:24 PM on Oct. 21, 2013

  • I guess I don't care enough to see it as illegal, I don't care who says what from where. My choices in votes are based on my opinions not any one elses.

    Answer by luvmygrandgirl at 2:25 PM on Oct. 21, 2013

  • Technically it is either illegal (if the church is officially sponsoring a candidate) or unethical (if the preacher is expressing his personal opinion during a service). But, politicians will continue to overlook it, especially if it benefits them.

    Answer by 3libras at 2:28 PM on Oct. 21, 2013

  • I will not say it does not happen but I have never had it happen in any church I have attended.
    We are told to follow the teachings of the Church and to pray on our decisions.
    This is well within the law.

    I agree that churches or other tax exempt groups should be prosecuted for endorsing candidates.

    Answer by Dardenella at 2:46 PM on Oct. 21, 2013

  • Oh but answering your question; Preaching from the pulpit is what is supposed to happen in a Church.

    Answer by Dardenella at 2:50 PM on Oct. 21, 2013

  • So how does the GPS outfit work it? It is a church and a PAC, or have they found some fine line way around it. I know that at one point they were being investigated for this reason.

    Answer by emptynstr at 3:13 PM on Oct. 21, 2013

  • It's an illegality which is not prosecuted, but should be. Or take away the tax exempt status.

    Answer by NotPanicking at 3:52 PM on Oct. 21, 2013

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