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The Americans United for Separation of Church and State (Americans United) is

targeting another pastor for endorsing conservative candidates from the pulpit as the
upcoming mid-term elections are becoming closer. October 17, Pastor Brad Brandon of
Berean Bible Baptist Church in Hastings, Minnesota, spoke with a biblical basis on issues
facing Minnesota voters -- "and then after the service, I endorsed candidates who best fit
God's blueprints for government and God's blueprints for society," he shares. American's
United filed a complaint with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) based on the Lyndon
Amendment, which was passed by Congress in 1954 and includes tax code requirements
for tax-exempt status. The group also opposes mandatory prayer in the public schools,
educational vouchers that may be used to direct government funds to private religious
schools and the posting of the Ten Commandments in government buildings - among
other things.
"But you know, I look at it from the First Amendment standpoint, and the First
Amendment guarantees me the freedom to exercise my speech," the pastor points out.
"The Constitution says, 'Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of
religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of
the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the
Government for a redress of grievances.'" He notes there is a so-far-unsuccessful effort to
shut down conservative radio, but because of the legal restriction on the church, everyone
has the right to speak freely, except pastors. So he does not deny violating the law, but he
believes the 1954 measure is unconstitutional. "Those are the two things that are under
attack right now, the two areas we're being told to basically 'sit down and shut up,' and
I'm not doing that; I refuse to do that," Brandon assures. Just over three weeks ago, more
than 100 pastors took part "Pulpit Freedom Sunday," joining the effort to get the matter
taken to court to abolish the prohibitions. Since that time, another pastor (this one in
Iowa) found himself in a similar situation with Americans United and essentially has
challenged the IRS to sue him.