The critical battle in the Virginia governor’s race is on…
They are now pressing and controversial social and political issues of the day, from abortion to voting rights to health care to the role parents ought to play in the public school system.
Whoever wins in this battle is vital to Party’s image, Democrat Terry McAuliffe and Republican Glenn Youngkin is one that is shaping up this critical battle.
In our previous reports, we know how busy the Democratic cults are in backing McAuliffe’s candidacy that they even made support videos for him.
It appears that two of the party’s most prominent figures have been so hasty to leverage whatever voting bloc they can that they may have risked the tax-exempt status of hundreds of black churches to do get their endorsement messages out and this includes Vice President Kamala Harris.
Kamala Harris who has time to cut a lot of videos lately, including an endorsement for McAuliffe which is set to be played in 300 churches across the state until Election Day on Nov. 2 but has not had very much time to either visit or do anything at all about the crippling humanitarian crisis on our southern border.
NEW — More than 300 Black churches across VA will hear from @KamalaHarris btwn Sun. and November 2 in video message that will air during morning services as part of outreach effort aimed to boost @TerryMcAuliffe.#VAGOV
— Eva McKend (@evamckend) October 16, 2021
Before Harris urging congregants to vote, telling them that she knows they will “send Terry McAuliffe back to Richmond.” The Vice President boasts about her own church background in the video message and she’s not the only one, Failed Stacey Abrams, the Democratic gubernatorial candidate of Georgia, has been visiting churches to campaign for McAuliffe and encourage congregants to vote for her.
— Stacey Abrams (@staceyabrams) October 17, 2021
The Democratic darling, who’d been raised by “not one, but two pastors,” expressed her support for McAuliffe at Second Calvary Baptist Church, where she and all other members were forced to produce their vaccine card upon entry, according to the Associated Press.
Pastor Sharon Riley of the Faith Deliverance Center congratulated Abrams for losing the 2018 Georgia gubernatorial election, saying she now sees that “God had a purpose” for Abrams.
Apparently, the plan included pushing the limits of federal tax law while roaming for other Democratic gubernatorial candidates in the hopes that they would be more successful than Abrams in their political aspirations.
Abrams, who is a strong pro-abortion activist, admitted that she used to be hesitant to mix the Bible and politics (for obvious reasons), but now sees it as “one of the most passionate political books ever written.”
Wow. Sometimes you just have to thank the good Lord that people like Abrams are going to have to give account for every idle word they utter one glorious day, because goodness gracious, where to start on this wild statement from a political candidate whose near-entire platform is firmly founded on counter-biblical immorality?
She told church members, “Voting is an act of faith, I need you to do the job.”
Sounds like a pretty overt endorsement to vote for a particular candidate, don’t you think?
You see, here’s the thing: 501(c)3 status churches, like the ones airing Harris’ endorsement video and hosting Abrams’ endorsement speeches, is expressly prohibited by federal law from participating in political endorsements, as noted by constitutional scholar Jonathan Turley last week.
Vice President Kamala Harris has taped an endorsement of McAuliffe that is being played at hundreds of African American churches around the state. The problem is the “Johnson Amendment” makes such political pitches in churches a violation of federal law. https://t.co/uASZBYdjLb
— Jonathan Turley (@JonathanTurley) October 18, 2021
It is, of course, entirely commonplace to see politicians visit churches to garner votes and take part in wholesome photo-ops. Houses of worship are not barred from merely giving a politician a platform, nor are they restricted from simply encouraging voter engagement in a non-partisan way.
Yet for churches to directly engage in the vocal, clear-cut endorsement of a political candidate is what seems to be rather undeniably in violation of the Johnson Amendment, which expressly prohibits non-profit organizations from such political activities.
This is illegal https://t.co/ggewStSVFL
— Benny (@bennyjohnson) October 17, 2021
“In 1954, Congress approved an amendment by Sen. Lyndon Johnson to prohibit 501(c)(3) organizations, which includes charities and churches, from engaging in any political campaign activity. To the extent Congress has revisited the ban over the years, it has in fact strengthened the ban,” as the IRS website explains.
Despite dubious claims from former President Donald Trump that he reversed the Johnson Amendment, it is still firmly in place and applicable to the churches hosting Harris and Abrams and their direct political endorsements.
The IRS explains (emphasis theirs), “Currently, the law prohibits political campaign activity by charities and churches by defining a 501(c)(3) organization as one ‘which does not participate in, or intervene in (including the publishing or distributing of statements), any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate for public office.‘”
As Turley said, it is difficult to characterize Harris’ and Abrams’ activities at these churches as anything but political endorsements. Any claims to the contrary are problematic at best.
The constitutional law expert explained on his website, “This was a direct political pitch reportedly played in hundreds of churches. Of course, the White House could claim that any violation was committed by the churches if they played the video in prohibited areas.”
He continued, “That assumes that this was not created for that purpose, but it would effectively throw the churches under the bus,The ultimate penalty is the loss of their tax exempt status, though that is unlikely given the lax enforcement in past cases. Nevertheless, there is a legitimate interest in whether the White House knowingly participated in an effort to campaign in churches in violation of their federal obligations.”
In other words, Harris and Abrams may very well have put the tax-exempt status of these churches at risk with their overzealous campaigning.
This is made all the worse by the fact that the White House is already facing backlash for similar potential federal offenses.
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki appeared to pretty much blatantly endorse McAuliffe from her podium last week, a clear violation of the Hatch Act, which prohibits federal officials from engaging in political activities while on duty.
— Matthew Foldi (@MatthewFoldi) October 14, 2021
Now, it’s pretty easy for me to believe that Psaki and Harris simply don’t care about the legality of their words and actions, but I’ll give them both the benefit of the doubt and concede that there’s no way to prove that they were blatantly and knowingly disregarding federal law.
That said, for two such important figures in the Biden administration — one of whom is a former prosecutor — to appear to so carelessly disregard federal law nonetheless is a pretty bad look.
It’s clear that they’re desperate to get McAuliffe elected, and don’t seem to be practicing much discretion in the process of bringing attention to the campaign. Yet their actions unwittingly highlight one of the worst aspects of the current Democratic Party: that they’ll stop at nothing to get their way.
How can they be trusted to ethically run anything if they care more about winning elections than bothering to make sure that they’re participating in them ethically?