President Trump wants to reduce political restrictions on tax-exempt organizations

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WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump reiterated Thursday a campaign promise that he used to successfully appeal to evangelical voters: a repeal of the Johnson amendment, legislation that limits the ability of religious tax-exempt organizations to endorse or oppose a political candidate.

Speaking at the National Prayer Breakfast about religious freedom, the President said: “Among those freedoms is the right to worship according to our own beliefs.”

“That is why I will get rid of and totally destroy the Johnson amendment and allow our representatives of faith to speak freely and without fear of retribution. I will do that,” he said.

This was a refrain on the campaign trail for the ticket.

“The Johnson amendment has blocked our pastors and ministers and others from speaking their minds from their own pulpits,” Trump said at the Values Voter Summit in September.

At the same event, Vice President Mike Pence told the group that by repealing the Johnson amendment, “we will take the muzzle off.”

The President did not offer a path for how he would repeal the legislation, which would require congressional action.