On Saturday June 15 the Fountain Hills Republican Club hosted a special and important guest from the Goldwater Institute. Matt Miller has worked on the subject of free speech for over a decade. He is currently the Senior Attorney at the Institute and leads the Institute’s free speech litigation effort.
Prior to joining the Goldwater Institute, while serving in the Texas Office of the Institute for Justice, Matt won important victories for free speech and economic liberty. Matt Miller’s cases have been featured often in the national press. In 2009, he led the effort to reform the Texas Constitution in order to better strengthen protections for private property owners.
Matt is passionate about his defense of the US Constitution with a particular focus on the First Amendment. He has been involved in major cases around the country most recently in New Mexico and Colorado. In these cases, he has been fighting to protect 501 (c) non-profits and their donor lists. His presentation on Saturday zeroed in on the many aspects surrounding this subject.
Matt informed the audience that there have been some situations in which government entities have insisted on the leaders of 501 (c) non-profit organizations handing over their lists of donors. These new laws have been forcing disclosure of not only names, but occupations, business connections of the donors and even their home addresses.
The Government sources defend their stance by declaring that this is for the sake of transparency. Some judges have agreed with these Governmental positions, not acknowledging the possible and in some cases the probable repercussions. An individual, after conducting an interview at an NPR station and upon leaving, was confronted with an angry, aggressive threat, “We know where you live!” Another person was nearly run off the road twice likely because he supported the “wrong” candidate. There have been many reports of similar ideological harassment situations. As we know, in the present climate, one wearing a red hat or having a Trump bumper sticker displayed can seem, by some, to be an open invitation for violent reactions.
Matt Miller concluded his presentation by posing the question as to the Government’s motives. He asked the audience whether when State Legislators or Town Councils demand the publication of 501 (c) donor lists are they thinking that they will help voters be better informed or are they attempting to suppress personal First Amendment rights? (Something we as Americans treasure very dearly?
The Goldwater Institute’s website, “In Defense of Liberty” at https://indefenseofliberty.blog/author/mmiller/ is well worth a visit and is
where Matt Miller addresses many important Free Speech Issues. All Republicans and fellow, like-minded Independents are encouraged to check in on the revamped Fountain Hills Republican Club website https://fountainhillsrepublicanclub.org