The Internal Revenue Service plans to rewrite proposed regulations limiting the political activities of the same type of tax-exempt groups the agency was accused of targeting after backlash from GOP lawmakers and politically active nonprofit groups.
IRS Commissioner John Koskinen told USA Today on Monday that the agency will likely “re-propose a redefined rule and ask for more public comment.” He expects the process will take “until the end of the year and beyond” to complete.
Koskinen said the revised rule will take into account criticism from conservative groups concerned the regulations will put free speech rights at risk. Some liberal groups voiced concerns that the regulations could bar voter education and registration programs, Koskinen said.
“I think we have to take all of that into consideration,” Koskinen told USA Today. “There are very thoughtful comments and concerns, and one of the questions that has evoked a lot of comment is, once you define what political activity is, to what organizations should it apply in the 501(c) context and how much of it should be allowed? All of that is going to be very important.”
In November, Treasury and the IRS issued draft regulations that would limit the political activities of such groups that fall under section 501(c)4 of the tax code. The proposed regulations attracted a record 150,000 public comments.
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