The ACLU-NJ fiercely opposed passage in the New Jersey Senate and Assembly of a bill intended to force a range of social welfare advocacy organizations – including nonpartisan, issue-based organizations – to disclose their donors and nonpartisan voter education activities. The constitutional concerns raised by this legislation invite a lawsuit, and the ACLU-NJ has begun preparing a legal strategy should the bill become law.
ACLU-NJ Executive Director Amol Sinha issued the following statement:
“Legislation demanding disclosure of donors to any issue-advocacy organization places privacy, free association, and free speech in jeopardy. Advocates across the ideological spectrum have united to sound the alarm over the very real threats that come with forcing nonprofit social welfare organizations to turn over personal details about their supporters.
“If the state enacts this bill into law, New Jersey invites a legal challenge. The Constitution is clear: the government cannot target organizations simply for uniting the voices of like-minded people to make a difference on issues of public concern.
“The ACLU-NJ is prepared to challenge this threat to our fundamental rights.”