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At IRS hearing, Sen. Bill Nelson questions political activity by ‘social welfare’ groups

by George Bennett | May 21st, 2013

Florida Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson, during a Senate Finance Committee hearing today on the Internal Revenue Service’s admitted targeting of conservative groups when they applied for tax-exempt status, used his time to question why “social welfare” organizations are allowed to engage in any political activity at all.

It’s part of an effort by Democrats on the committee to shift focus from the hassling of tea party groups to the interpretation of the tax law that says 501(c)(4) groups must be operated “exclusively” for social welfare purposes.

IRS regulations say an organization meets the “exclusively” standard if it is “primarily engaged in promoting in some way the common good and general welfare of the community.”

Nelson decried the “enormous money” going through 501(c)(4) organizations and asked “How could you all in the IRS allow the tax breaks funded basically by the taxpayer (to be spent) on these political campaign expenditures?”

He added: “I understand the king’s English, and it says the promotion of social welfare does not include direct or indirect participation or intervention in political campaigns. Now, how you interpret that to say that that does allow some intervention in political campaigns is beyond me.”

42 Responses to “At IRS hearing, Sen. Bill Nelson questions political activity by ‘social welfare’ groups”

  1. luckydog Says:

    Billy, you always vote for liberal causes and now you are dumfounded as to how this happened? Can you say “I am a cluck”?

  2. Mike Says:

    They can try to steer the story as much as they want unfortunately it doesn’t change the fact that the head of the IRS non-profit division is about to plead the fifth. If this really was due to rogue agents why would she need to plead the fifth? Who is being protected?

  3. OBIWAN Says:

    He could have spent his five minutes asking real questions:

    1. Who made up the list of questions only asked of applicants who might be less than rabid progressive liberal loons?

    2. Who directly ordered the process of persecuting over 500 groups?

    3. Was the process initiated because so many Democrat Senators made speeches asking the IRS and DOJ to come down against any groups not tolling the BARAMA Si Se Puede Marxist revolution?

    4. Who in the White House delivered the IRS information to the DNC for intel on the 2010 and 2012 election campaigns?

    5. How much has Sen Max BAucus set aside in the Senate budget for the multi$$million awards the Federal GOVT is likely to lose in the class action lawsuits for this fraudulent service?

    He could have but as usual he fails to understand his basic responsibility of every caring about honest GOVT at any level!

    As Florida’s most corrupt Insurance Commisioner ole Bill Nelson required one or two cocktail fundraisers to get on his public appointment book… no matter how pressing the legit reason for needing that appointment!!

  4. Thomas Says:

    Do away with these groups who use non-profit as their cover and the issue will be done. Why plead the fifth? Ask Rick Scott that one.

  5. greg Says:

    obiwan, did you read the article? are you familiar with 501c status? non profits ARE NOT allowed to support political campaigns in any way. Tea Part: 501c….Tea Party: supports political campaigns finacially…Tea Party: Breaking the law. now i understand you would be behind this scrutiny 100% if these were rabid marxist liberal loons…..but since they are brain dead conservative morons, you think it’s ok….am i surprised? no…(and no one was persecuted….jews were persecuted in egypt…..christians were persecuted in rome….no one was persecuted in washington)

  6. gt Says:

    I believe that RICO should be used against the Democrat Party as they were using all branches of government to intimidate anyone against their liberal agenda. This includes the president,senators,congress,atf,justice dept,irs,osha,and their liberal organizations.

  7. kelly Says:

    @obiwan, at least you don’t hide your rabid partisanship.

  8. Just SHAMEFIL Says:

    This is not just a simple review of ‘social groups’, Senator Nelson.

    This is a wholesale attack on CERTAIN groups with DELAYED approvals, while OTHER GROUPS were given a pass.

    Perhaps, the public needs to look into Senator Nelson’s tax forms.

    How about a reduced tax on HIS property just because he has 6 cows on HIS property.

    Shame on Senator Nelson for implying that there was nothing wrong with what the IRS did.

    Did ALL GROUPS have the SAME LIST OF QUESTIONS TO ANSWER?

    Did ALL GROUPS have the SAME WAIT TIME FOR APPROVAL?

    How convenient this all occurred prior to and during the 2012 presidential elections.

    Shameful, just plain shameful.

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  10. Audit the DNC Says:

    Look up the definition of “Political Hack” in a dictionary and up pops a picture of Bill Nelson.

  11. OBIWAN Says:

    @ GREG

    Of course I can read. The IRS is clear regarding special status. Speaking of “special” status, I am very proud that someone of your ilk, was able to navigate a computer keyboard. I am sure that your highest achievement to date has been being able to count to potato. Next up for you is a part time job “bagging’ groceries and wearing lace up shoes. Now go get bent!

  12. greg Says:

    dear readers….see what happens to simple minded people when they are wrong?? they attack….small, petty, simple minded attacks. i’m used to it…i know lots of right wingers…they’re all the same. obiwan….do you feel you are being “persecuted”???

  13. OBIWAN Says:

    @ GREG

    For your information, I voted for Obama in both 2008 and 2012. As to being “persecuted”, is that some type of veiled homosexual come on? I am not one to frequent public bathrooms to engage in unspeakable activities with other gentlemen like you. However if by “persecuted” you mean has it ever felt like a brick coming out sideways…then yes.

  14. O-BEE-WAN Says:

    @ GREG
    Thanks for trying to get be banned from here. FYI, I voted for Obama in 2008 & 2012. In regards to being “persecuted”, I guess since I do not frequent public restrooms to engage in unspeakable acts with other men, I am not sure what you mean. If you mean does it feel like a brick coiming out sideways…then yes.

  15. Get back in the kitchen Says:

    Really “Kelly”?

    You’re gonna jump in like you know “whats up”? Let me give you a little advise sister: Suffrage does not equal equality!
    Does your man know you’re on his computer? Now run along and iron a shirt or something

  16. greg Says:

    their is no excuse for your behavior. not only are you a simple minded fool, but you are probably mildly retarded. you are a typical right-winger who hates those that are like him. you are peobably a jew. if you can’t dish it out, then don’t take it!

  17. greg Says:

    hey greg….don’t put your anti-semetic remarks up there with my name. everyone can tell the difference…i can spell.
    obiwan, i can tell you are not the real OBIWAN…although he is obnoxious, he is no where near as dim witted as you.

  18. Tim H. Says:

    @ greg

    I cannot sit back and allow you to espouse your anti-semtic views on a public forum such as this. You should be ashamed of yourself. As a jewish man, people who share your point of view make me sick. Please do us all a favor a disappear. Blaming someone else for pretending to be you on a post is a cop-out.

  19. greg Says:

    There’s not a day goes by I don’t feel regret. Not because I post in here, or because you think I should. I look back on the way I was before that last post: a young, stupid kid who made that terrible comment. I want to talk to him. I want to try and talk some sense to him, tell him the way things are. But I can’t. That kid’s long gone and this old man is all that’s left. I got to live with that. obiwan? It’s just a bullsh*t name. So you go on and click your little “report” button, sonny, and stop wasting my time. Because to tell you the truth, I don’t give a sh*t.

  20. greg Says:

    @ greg

    I don’t know who keeps using my name but There’s a harsh truth to face. No way I’m gonna comment on another forum. All I do anymore is think of ways to break my subscription, so maybe they’d send me back. Terrible thing, to live in fear. Obiwan knew it. Knew it all too well. All I want is to be back where things make sense. Where I won’t have to be afraid all the time. Only one thing stops me. A promise I made to greg.

  21. gregg Says:

    I don’t know who keeps using my name but There’s a harsh truth to face. No way I’m gonna comment on another forum. All I do anymore is think of ways to break my subscription, so maybe they’d send me back. Terrible thing, to live in fear. Obiwan knew it. Knew it all too well. All I want is to be back where things make sense. Where I won’t have to be afraid all the time. Only one thing stops me. A promise I made to greg.

  22. Kevin Says:

    The Senator makes a good point. Since the only purpose of these so called social welfare groups is to support or malign a political candidate, something a tax exempt group is not supposed to do, why didn’t the IRS just stamp their standard application DENIED. Why make up a bunch of stupid and prying questions?

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