Nonprofits and Political Activity: Lessons from England and Canada
7 Pages Posted: 26 Mar 2014
Date Written: March 25, 2014
In the recent debate about nonprofit organizations and political activity, little attention has been paid to what we can learn from the approach of other countries. This piece compares U.S. rules with those of Canada and England, in the context of both their nonprofit rules applicable to political activity and their campaign finance laws. As the piece explains, England and Canada, like the U.S., prohibit direct or indirect campaign intervention by charities. These countries, however, differ from the U.S. and each other in the amount of lobbying and other non-campaign political engagement permitted by charities. England and Canada do not limit noncharitable nonprofits from engaging in any type of political activity under their nonprofit or tax laws. Both countries, however, regulate elections and campaign finance in general more stringently than does the U.S.
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