On July 1, in their ruling on Americans for Prosperity Foundation v. Bonta, the United States Supreme Court struck down a ten-year-old California law that requires nonprofits to disclose their top donors to the IRS. This ruling sets a dangerous precedent about the transparency of contributions—not only to charity, but also potentially to politicians and lobbyists—which could have far-reaching and frightening implications for the health of our democracy.

Under its law, California required charities to report the names and addresses of their largest donors to the Internal Revenue Service. The donor information was given only to the IRS and was not released to the public.

Chuck Collins directs the Program on Inequality and the Common Good at the Institute for Policy Studies, where he also co-edits Inequality.org. Helen Flannery is an Associate Fellow at the Institute for Policy Studies.

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