A public comment was submitted today by Our Generation regarding the new IRS proposed rule which aims to limit free speech by outside 501(c)(4) advocacy groups. The deadline for comment submission regarding this rule is Thursday, February 27, 2014 at 11:59 PM EST. Our Generation encourages everyone to go to this link and submit a comment.
Read the comment below:
February 27, 2014
The Honorable John A. Koskinen
Commissioner of Internal
Room 5205 Internal Revenue Service
1111 Constitution Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20224
RE: (REG–134417–13) IRS Proposed Rule: Guidance for Tax-Exempt Social Welfare Organizations on Candidate-Related Political Activities
Dear Commissioner Koskinen:
Our Generation, Inc. is troubled by the move by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to enact a rule that would allow for the selective targeting of some organizations that are involved in the political process. Our Generation is a 501(c)(4) organization that represents the interests of thousands of Americans across the country. We oppose the adoption of the proposed rule. We oppose any actions taken by the IRS to limit participation from individuals or groups to have a voice in political or policy debate.
This proposed rule would negatively affect the political process and the freedoms that groups and individuals have to organize and participate in the public arena. It is of concern that if the proposed rule is adopted the government will have the ability to selectively target some groups. Additionally, this rule could effectively silence grassroots organizations. Silencing organizations and groups from the political process is not a policy that most Americans support.
These rules would hurt civic participation in several ways because many 501(c)(4) groups engage in activities that aren’t necessarily candidate-oriented, but activities that encourage awareness of issues and the right to be part of the political process. These activities include issue education. The ability of 501(c)(4) groups to engage in these types of activities would be impacted negatively under the new rule.
Our Generation would like to reiterate our opposition to this new rule. We feel that it would have a negative impact on participation in the political process. Our Generation hopes that the rule will not be adopted, and that American citizens will continue to be able to play an active role in the political process.