This article reports that Puerto Rico’s Secretary of the Treasury, Juan Zaragoza, announced that his agency will soon begin an audit of religious entities in an effort to identify non-profit organizations that are wrongfully avoiding payment of taxes. The investigation’s inclusion of religious organizations is part of the third phase of a pilot program that began last year with an audit of more than 40 non-profit organizations.
On April 19, 2016, the Catholic News Agency reported on the results of a new Marist Poll survey relating to the Little Sisters of the Poor’s pending litigation before the U.S. Supreme Court. The article begins as follows:
A new survey says most Americans think the Obama administration’s federal contraception mandate is unfair to the Little Sisters of the Poor and other religious groups defending themselves before the U.S. Supreme Court.
About 53 percent of Americans said the process required by the government is “unfair,” while only 32 percent did not, according to a new Marist Poll commissioned by the Knights of Columbus.
The federal government has exempted many other organizations’ employee health care plans from a requirement to provide contraception and drugs that can produce abortions. But it has no exemption for the Little Sisters of the Poor, who help run houses to care for the elderly poor.
The full text of the article appears here.
In May, the New York University Press will release “American Conservatism: Nomos LVI,” edited by Sanford V. Levinson (University of Texas), Joel Parker (University of Texas), and Melissa S. Williams (University of Toronto). The publisher’s description follows:
The topic of American conservatism is especially timely—and perhaps volatile. Is there what might be termed an “exceptional” form of conservatism that is characteristically American, in contrast to conservatisms found in other countries? Are views that are identified in the United States as conservative necessarily congruent with what political theorists might classify under that label? Or does much American conservatism almost necessarily reflect the distinctly liberal background of American political thought?
In American Conservatism, a distinguished group of American political and legal scholars reflect on these crucial questions, unpacking the very nature and development of American conservative thought. They examine both the historical and contemporary realities of arguments offered by self-conscious conservatives in the United States, offering a well-rounded view of the state of this field. In addition to synoptic overviews of the various dimensions of American conservative thought, specific attention is paid to such topics as American constitutionalism, the role of religion and religious institutions, and the particular impact of the late Leo Strauss on American thought and thinkers. Just as American conservatism includes a wide, and sometimes conflicting, group of thinkers, the essays in this volume themselves reflect differing and sometimes controversial assessments of the theorists under discussion.