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SUNDAY, APRIL 10, 2005
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EDITORIAL

Names of those who give to politics should be public

It's not surprising that the Christian Coalition doesn't want to disclose who gives it money.

It is, however, disappointing that an organization carrying the name of Christ wishes to operate in secret.

Coalition supporters in the state Senate stopped any bill from passing or being killed since the Legislature returned from spring break March 29.

So, what's to hide?

It's who pays for the Coalition's dirty tricks, and skewed questionnaires.

The bill would require groups to disclose their sources of money when they run ads or distribute public brochures to try to influence an election or referendum.

Sen. Bobby Denton, D-Muscle Shoals, described the Coalition's politics succinctly:

"I'm a deacon in probably the most conservative church in Alabama — the Church of Christ ... Yet I've never made more than a 'D' on the Christian Coalition's scoreboard because they skew the questions."

The Coalition, of course, claims the bill is persecution by liberals and devils. But any group, especially one calling itself a coalition of Christians, should be wide open when it comes to who finances its attempts to influence voters and legislation.

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