Search  |  Login  |  Register

1331151629000

(Washington, DC) - The American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ), focusing on constitutional law, said it is representing nearly 20 Tea Party organizations nationwide against what appears to be a coordinated attempt by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to intimidate and silence these organizations in this election year. The ACLJ says IRS information demands sent to Tea Party groups include probing questions that violate the free speech and freedom of association rights guaranteed by the First Amendment.

"This appears to be a coordinated attempt to intimidate Tea Party organizations by demanding information that is outside the scope of legitimate inquiry and violates the First Amendment," said Jay Sekulow, Chief Counsel of the ACLJ. "These organizations have followed the law and applied for tax exempt status for their activities as Americans have done for decades. The problem here is the IRS has gone beyond legitimate inquiries and is demanding that these organizations answer questions that actually violate the First Amendment rights of our clients. The IRS is demanding that groups reveal the internal workings of their organizations - including the identification of members, how they are selected, who they associate with, and even what they discuss. This intimidation campaign is as onerous as what the IRS did to the NAACP in the 1950's and is simply unacceptable. We will aggressively defend our clients and are prepared to take the IRS to court if necessary."

The ACLJ says the IRS information demands sent to the Tea Party groups are not in response to complaints of wrongdoing, but instead in response to applications by the organizations for 501(c)(4) tax exempt status.

Sekulow, who served as a trial lawyer with the Office of the Chief Counsel for the IRS earlier in his career, said many of the questions are simply inappropriate and fall well outside the scope of legitimate IRS inquiry. A sampling of the problematic questions are posted here.

The ACLJ is also calling for Congressional oversight hearings on this issue. In just two days, the ACLJ has heard from more than 30,000 Americans urging Congress to conduct hearings concerning the IRS actions in this matter.

Led by Chief Counsel Jay Sekulow, the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ), focusing on constitutional law, is based in Washington, D.C.

Latest in
Free Speech

Good Sign for ACLJ’s Tea Party Lawsuit

By Carly F. Gammill1431120815912

We have received some promising news that will have a direct bearing on our legal challenge against the Internal Revenue Service. As you know, we represent dozens of Tea Party, conservative, and pro-life organizations in a federal lawsuit against the IRS – challenging the agency’s unconstitutional...

read more

Honesty: A Refreshing Policy for IRS

By Carly F. Gammill1431090000000

Two years ago, former top IRS official Lois Lerner publicly admitted, and apologized for, the IRS’s targeting of Tea Party applicants for tax exemption in an attempt to get out in front of the soon-to-be-released report by The Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) that would...

read more

Radical Islam Clashes With Free Speech

By Edward White1430928642123

A terrorist attack took place in Garland, Texas, this week in response to a free speech conference that took issue with the Islamic prohibition against creating images of the Prophet Muhammad. The event awarded a financial prize to the person who drew the best cartoon of Muhammad. The terrorist...

read more

Thousands of Lost IRS Emails Reappear

By Jay Sekulow1430507471280

Drip. Drip. Drip. That’s what continues to happen as the scandal unfolds at the Obama administration’s Internal Revenue Service (IRS). First, we were told that critical emails of former top IRS official Lois Lerner – at the center of an illegal targeting scheme – were gone – unrecoverable – nowhere...

read more