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11/1/2006 - November 2006 - Alabama General Election 2006

Alabama General Election 2006 As a reminder, on November 7, 2006, we will have an opportunity to vote for officials from the governor on down and in congressional races. Whether you are a Republican or Democrat, conservative, liberal, or somewhere in between, in order for your voice to be heard in government, you must first vote. We have had a number of inquiries about some unofficial guidelines published by the Internal Revenue Service this year and about the voter guides of Christian Action Alabama nee´ Christian Coalition of Alabama and Redeem the Vote, as well as, those of the Alabama League of Women Voters and the Alabama Appleseed Center for Law & Justice. We refer you back to our May 2006 Educational Update “Political Activity in the Church.” Please contact us for a copy. The explanation given in our Update is not changed by Internal Revenue Service comments. If you wish to view what the Internal Revenue Service said, you may check the following web addresses: www.IRS.gov (and follow the links) www.IRS.gov/charities/charitable/article/0,,iv=120703,00.html www.IRS.gov/newsroom/article/0,,iv=154712,00.html There has been criticism of Christian Action Alabama’s anticipated voter guide since the organization broke off relations with the national Christian Coalition. One of the reasons was differences over the content of the voter guide. Notwithstanding personal political opinions of some commentators, past voter guides published by Christian Coalition of Alabama have met IRS criteria. Unfortunately, many Democrats have chosen not to respond to the questionnaire that is used to prepare the voter guide. An apparent response to this has been a questionnaire that has been sent out by Redeem the Vote, which anticipates preparing a voter guide based on responses. The questions we have seen deal not with issues, but with personal matters of faith. Whether these voter guides are sufficiently responsive or informative must be judged by the voters. It appears the goal of providing objective materials for voter education may be lost in political shenanigans meant to poison the products. Our best advice is for you to not only review the voter guides, but be aware of by whom they are published and whether you are familiar with the organization. Remember, while the publishing organization cannot publish its own position on the issues, your familiarity with it and its credibility will be helpful in your assessment, particularly under the present circumstances in Alabama.

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