Ohio's Separation of Church and State --Via the Washington Post:
(3:06 PM) Links to this post
In a challenge to the ethics of conservative Ohio religious leaders and the fairness of the Internal Revenue Service, a group of 56 clergy members contends that two churches have gone too far in supporting a Republican candidate for governor.
Two complaints filed with the tax agency say that the large Columbus area churches, active in President Bush's narrow Ohio win in 2004, violated their tax-exempt status by pushing the candidacy of J. Kenneth Blackwell, who is the secretary of state and the favored candidate of Ohio's religious right.
The clergy members said the churches improperly held political activities and allowed Republican organizations to use their facilities.
The goal of the challenge is "for these churches to stop acting like electioneering organizations," said the Rev. Eric Williams, pastor of North Congregational United Church of Christ. "I don't want to harm or demonize these churches. I want these churches to act legally."
When three months passed without public evidence that the IRS had acted on a January complaint, the clergy members filed a second document, expanding the allegations.