The Atlantic

A Rabbi Defends the Johnson Amendment

The many reasons why President Trump should not end the law preventing tax-exempt organizations, including religious entities, from supporting political candidates.
Source: Carlos Barria / Reuters

All religion involves some politics. As the partisanship heats up even classical religious bromides take on an undiplomatic edge. A biblical reference to ‘welcoming the stranger’ in the current climate, seems to favor one political position over another. ‘Righteousness exalts a nation’ sounds like it belong on a banner at a rally. Yet despite this natural encroachment American law has drawn some lines. The Johnson amendment, named for then Senator Lyndon Johnson, prohibits tax-exempt organizations from supporting political candidates. As a Rabbi, I pray – quite literally – that it is not repealed.

I lead a politically diverse

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