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• Last year, the Supreme Court of Tennessee ruled that a state "Campaign Financial Disclosure Act," which regulated the activities of "political campaign committees" within the state, applied to a group of 13 churches that publicly opposed the adoption of a "liquor-by-the-drink" referendum. Bemis Pentecostal Church v. State, 731 S.W.2d 897 (Tenn. 1987). The churches purchased radio, television, and newspaper advertisements opposing the liquor referendum, and offering to provide transportation to the polls on election day; some of the churches, as part of the broadcast of their religious services, broadcast sermons expressing opposition to the referendum; and most of the churches published newsletters for their members which included expressions of opposition to the referendum. The churches spent $5,150 in their efforts. Following an anonymous complaint, the state attorney general investigated ...

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Posted:
  • July 1, 1988

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