On Monday, the New Civil Liberties Alliance filed an amicus brief in the Supreme Court supporting petitioners against Joe Biden’s Health and Human Services nominee Xavier Becerra’s attempt as attorney general of California to out nonprofit donors for leftist harassment.
“The attorney general’s demand that charities turn over the names of their top donors is nothing more than state-sponsored cancel culture,” said Michael DeGrandis, an NCLA lawyer. “The Constitution guarantees not only the right to associate but also privacy in one’s associations. In an increasingly polarized environment, people across the political spectrum face harassment, loss of employment, and even violence because of their viewpoints and the people with whom they associate.”
The plaintiffs are relying on the precedent set by the landmark 1958 case NAACP v. Alabama that ruled the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People did not have to publicly disclose its members. The government is loosely relying on the 2010 case Citizens United and Doe v. Reed, which created laws mandating public disclosure of donors for campaigns. However, it is unclear how the case about private donors relates to election disclosure procedures—since the California case pertains to charities in general that are not necessarily affiliated with ongoing campaigns.