Wisconsin-based atheist group sues Trump over church order

On a practical level, the Internal Revenue Service rarely enforced the law.

"Churches shouldn't be muzzled, not for profits shouldn't be muzzled, or have their free speech taken away just because they have an opinion on an election, my goodness, this is America", Appling said.

Trump is on record as saying that he wants to "totally destroy the Johnson Amendment".

Another aspect of the order is a weakening of what Trump called the "unfair" Johnson Amendment during the May 4 event.

Crafted by then-U.S. Sen. Lyndon Johnson. That bill barred houses of worship from electioneering or making outright political endorsements from the pulpit.

It's created to further weaken enforcement of an IRS rule barring churches and non-profits from endorsing political candidates. "We're going to start protecting religious liberty instead of assaulting it". Religious groups, for opposite reasons, likewise stand ready to see if the order has any teeth.

Julaine Appling is the President of Wisconsin Family Action, a pro-Christian conservative values organization.

"Once again, the LGBTQ community is moved to celebrate the idea that we have dodged a bullet", said GLSEN's executive director, Dr. Eliza Byard in a statement. Our country's first liberty guarantees the right of the people to freely practice their closely held religious beliefs.

In his remarks, Trump said that "pastors, priests and imams" were targeted by the Johnson amendment, and would be freer to engage in political activity under his executive order.

The order also asks the government to issue rules that would allow religious groups such as the Little Sister of the Poor to deny their employees insurance coverage for services that they oppose on religious grounds, such as birth-control pills.

While evangelicals generally welcomed Trump's executive order, other groups raised objections.

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Some religious leaders, however, object to any measure that would make it easier to inject politics into places of worship.

Some Mississippi religious leaders are expressing mixed emotions about the president's executive order to allow religious organizations to become more politically active.

Like Stansberry, the Rev. Don Heath and the Rev. As soon as details of the order are sorted out, his church plans to endorse a candidate for mayor. "I think it's bad public policy". To the extent we go down that road, I think it's unwise.

Heath, senior pastor of Edmond Trinity Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), shared similar comments. "To me the separation of church and state is fundamental to our nation's identity and it concerns me".

"We believe what the President has ordered is for the IRS not to enforce long-standing prohibition against churches being involved in electoral activities", he says. "We won't be doing that".

Under the church's stance of neutrality, it does not endorse political candidates, parties or platforms, or tell church members who they should support or what their party affiliation should be.

The White House Press Secretary, Sean Spicer, however, refused to entertain questions on the executive order.

"They love to come out against Republicans", she said of the organization.

It was filled with religious exemptions and language that could give millions of Americans "a licence to discriminate" against parents that were unwed, some rights advocates, and the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community.

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