In a 6-3 decision on Thursday, July 1, the US Supreme Court ruled in favor of two conservative charities in California, granting them exemption from the state’s donor disclosure requirement.
According to Joshua Martin, writing for the National Religious Broadcasters, all six of the conservative justices on the court agreed that California’s requirement for non-profit organizations to disclose the identities of their major donors violated the charities’ First Amendment rights of freedom of association.
“This is a huge win for free speech,” NRB CEO Troy A. Miller said.
“NRB has long opposed public disclosure of donors to organizations. Many organizations rely on donations in order to continue supporting family values, and we are concerned that public disclosure of donors to organizations that support ‘controversial’ viewpoints or candidates might subject donors to threats, harassment, and reprisals. We applaud this decision by the Supreme Court.”
NRB reports the Americans for Prosperity Foundation, a public charity devoted to providing education and training on the principles of a free and open society, and the Thomas Moore Law Group, a law firm centered around religious freedom, both argued that without this ruling from the Supreme Court, major charitable donors would be less inclined to donate due to the possibility of donors receiving threats and harassment for supporting certain organizations or political campaigns.
“California’s disclosure requirement is facially invalid because it burdens donors’ First Amendment rights and is not narrowly tailored to an important government interest,” Chief Justice John Roberts stated.
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SOURCE: Assist News Service, Michael Ireland