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Arlington, Va. – Today, Americans for Prosperity (AFP) endorsed legislation introduced by Senators Mitch McConnell and Mike Braun aimed at protecting Americans’ privacy. The Don’t Weaponize the IRS Act protects nonprofit organizations and the personal information of their supporters while still allowing the IRS access to information that is needed for tax purposes.
AFP Chief Government Affairs Officer Brent Gardner issued the following statement:
“People shouldn’t have to choose between supporting a cause and becoming a political target. Stripping people of their privacy makes it easier for politicians of all stripes to monitor, intimidate, and silence people who join movements those in power oppose. This bill protects the rights of all Americans to support the causes they care about. And we are proud to stand in support of it.”
This isn’t theoretical. The IRS targeted conservative groups in 2013. And just last year, some demanded that the Justice Department investigate the funding of racial justice protestors.
In 2020 the IRS finalized a rule that eliminated the requirement that non-profits list the personal information of some of their donors on their annual Form 990 reports.
This commonsense rule protects non-profit organizations and their donors while still allowing the IRS access to information that is needed for tax purposes.
H.R. 1/S. 1 includes provisions that would roll back these protections, forcing nonprofits to submit the information of their substantial donors every year, and risk that information being leaked to the public or used to punish organizations because of their donors. These harms are not hypothetical, and during the rulemaking comment period many of these stories came to light.