To the editor:
The IRS recently proposed new regulations that will further stifle political speech and make it more difficult for citizen-led groups and associations to form. These new rules will codify the unethical targeting of conservative 501(c)(4) organizations that occurred during the past three to four years, and still occurs today. Very simply, the proposed rules are a blatant attempt to legalize the illegal discrimination and oppression of the American citizen’s right to freedom of speech — particularly political speech — that is guaranteed by the First Amendment.
These new rules make it illegal for a 501(c)(4) organization to participate in voter registration activities, host forums or debates with our representatives in Washington, to publish voter guides and voting records, and to even mention the names of elected officials in public statements. Consequently, American citizens literally will be punished for discussing and educating others about the votes that their elected representatives have taken.
These are the rules of despots who have something to hide, who want to turn citizens into subjects, and are wholly inappropriate for a free people with a constitutionally limited government. I will be contacting my Congressman, Rep. Scott Tipton, and urging him to oppose these toxic rules. I encourage my fellow citizens to do the same.
The comment period for these rules ends Feb. 27. All Americans — regardless of their political associations — should take this opportunity to let the IRS know that these proposed regulations are completely unacceptable. By www.teapartypatriots.org/irs
regulations, you can voice your concerns about the IRS’s onerous restrictions on free speech.
Matt C. Winey